LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - Longtime Lubbock Judge Bill Sowder of the 99th District Court announced he will not seek re-election on Thursday.
However, he wants to make it clear that he is also not retiring.
After 15 years on the bench in that court, he will be considered a senior judge across the state of Texas.
As a senior judge, Sowder will fill in for judges with crowded dockets or who may have a conflict of interest.
Either way, he tells us he will likely be around the Lubbock County courthouse or others in the area quite often.
He will also continue as a character coach for the Lubbock High football team.
Part of this new chapter in his life includes some new business ventures, as well as spending more time with his grandchildren.
He said one business already in the works involves someone close to him and they are excited to get things underway.
"My wife is a go-getter, and we already have a couple of AirB&B properties. She wants to expand on that, and that's kind of her passion right now," Sowder said.
Judge Sowder told NewsChannel 11, "If i stayed it would be great and if i go it will be great, so either way I feel confident in my decision."
Also on Thursday, Former County Court at Law Judge Phillip Hays filed to get his name on the ballot in the Republican Primary.
He will be running to fill Judge Sowder's seat in the 99th District Court.