Condensed and edited for clarity
We had the opportunity to have an informative conversation with ICJE’s new Executive Director Nelson. We learned she is a vegan and had a great recommendation for an Atlanta donut shop which we have already visited and loved.
Michelle Barclay: Tell us a little about your background and what led you to ICJE.
Lynne Moore Nelson: I’ve been drawn towards Georgia my whole life and didn’t really recognize the signs. I’m originally from Minneapolis, Minnesota but my dad was born in Tignall Georgia, he grew up in Statesboro, and I graduated from Mercer Law in Macon and was married in Savannah.
I spent 18 years in Chicago, working at several City of Chicago agencies, including the Chicago Park District as Deputy to the Chief Operating Officer and 14 years at the Chicago Public Schools in a variety of executive management roles – including First Assistant Chief of Staff to the CEO, Chief of Staff to the Chief Education Officer, and Deputy Chief of Operations/Chief of Staff for its largest department, Special Education. For the past six years, I worked at Fulton County – I served 4 years as Chief of Staff to the District Attorney and about a year and a half as Court Administrator for the Fulton County Magistrate Court.
The ICJE Executive Director posting was a unique and perfect intersection of my background in law, public school education, and general public sector management for the past 27 years. I was unaware such a job as Executive Director for judicial education existed and was honored to have the opportunity to join the Institute.
MB: What a great path! What are your short-term goals for ICJE?
Lynne Moore Nelson: My short-term goals are to (1) become familiar with the the process, goals and objectives of ICJE, (2) develop relationships with my team and our collaborator, the University of Georgia Law School, and (3) provide support to the constituents we serve, including our amazing volunteer trainers. Another short term goal is to ask process questions of why we do what we do and the answer cannot be because we have always done it this way. Everybody tells me it takes about a year and a half to get acclimated and learn how the ICJE soup is made. So I’m learning how to make delicious soup for all to enjoy.
MB: Long term goal or goals?
Lynne Moore Nelson: My definite long-term goal is for Georgia to be the gold seal standard in judicial education for the United States of America. I want ICJE to be regarded as the premier judicial education provider. And I want everyone in the country to look to ICJE as the model for excellence and innovation. We are already on our way and I see no reason why this can’t be accomplished with our talented roster of volunteer judicial trainers we have as our partners.
MB: I love that answer.
Lynne Moore Nelson: I will be a happy camper when we realize that long term goal.
MB: What do you like to do in your free time?
Lynne Moore Nelson: My husband and I recently moved to the Athens Georgia area from Atlanta. We are still exploring our new home and discovering new restaurants. I am a vegan and he is a meat eater but Athens is known for their good food. We have not been disappointed. I also like to workout and listen to all types of music to relax.
I look forward to meeting and working with everyone and ask for their patience as I learn names and become familiar with everything – it is an extreme honor serving Georgia’s judicial branch and I do not take this responsibility lightly. Thank you.