National Association of Attorneys General
Elizabeth Barrett-Anderson is a former attorney general of Guam, a former senator, and retired Superior Court of Guam Judge.
Elizabeth graduated from the Academy of Our Lady of Guam in 1971. She graduated from the University of San Francisco in 1974, and received her law degree from the University of Santa Clara School of Law in 1979. She is the first Chamorro female attorney to be admitted to practice law on Guam.
Upon returning to Guam she clerked for the Superior Court of Guam, and from 1981 through 1984, she served as Legal Counsel to the Department of Education. She entered private practice in 1984 with the law firm of Arriola & Cowan as an associate, and in 1987, Governor Joseph F. Ada nominated Barrett-Anderson as Attorney General of Guam. She served as attorney general from 1987-1994, the longest serving attorney general.
During her tenure as Attorney General, General Barrett-Anderson established the Family Division to strengthen the Territory’s Child Support Enforcement program, directed attention to the needs of abused children, and to address a growing juvenile problem. She was also instrumental in the enactment of the Consumer Protection Law in 1992, and the modernization of Guam’s Notary Public statute in 1993. She was elected by Governor Joseph F. Ada as Director of the Year in 1991 in recognition of her innovative ideas and strengthening of the prosecutorial and civil divisions of the Attorney General’s Office. She was also awarded the 1994 Achievement Award by the National Association of Notary Public for her modernization of Guam’s Notary Laws.
She left her post as attorney general in July 1994 to run for the Guam Legislature, and was elected to the 23rd and 24th Legislatures, and later nominated by Governor Carl T.C. Gutierrez to become a judge of the Superior Court of Guam.
The DWI Court was established in 2012 under Judge Barrett-Anderson’s leadership and credited for streamlining the efficiency of drunk driving prosecution, and reduction in the number of drunk driving arrests on island. In its second year of operation the DWI Court received the O’Rourke Award by the National Highway Transportation & Safety Administration for its overall work in improving highway safety in Guam.
After her retirement from 14 years as a trial court judge, Judge Barrett – Anderson continued to work as a senior Judge Pro Tempore assigned to Traffic Court. In her first year on Traffic Court she was instrumental in decriminalizing traffic court fines, rewriting the Traffic Court Rules of Court, and assisting in the construction of a new traffic Court Hearing Room. In addition to her Pro Tempore work, Judge Barrett – Anderson developed Guam’s first language access program, the Court Interpreter Registry Program, responsible for the training dozens courtroom interpreters in 18 different language to provide equally access to justice through interpreter services for indigent defendants, and parents in the juvenile and child support cases.
Elizabeth Barrett-Anderson is the recipient of numerous local and national awards.