August 2018

As the Courts Journal enters its 45th calendar year (started in Dec. 1973), it is time for something new.  And old. Email was invented in 1972, but it is still going strong too.  The email newsletter has re-emerged in recent years as a unique way to connect with readers, distinct from social media or publishing on the web.  We moved to a quarterly Courts Journal newsletter last year, but starting in August and with support from the Judicial Council Strategic Planning Committee, we are going to change to a monthly issue with fewer articles; it will be on one page with visuals.  We will still mail out a one-page version of the newsletter (monthly as well) just in case you miss the email.   Our goal is to keep you informed about various events, awards, and news that involves or concerns Georgia’s Judicial Branch, but now in a more timely way.  

Also, we are losing a long time colleague within our JC/AOC Communications division.  Ashley Stollar is leaving the JC/AOC for a position with the State Bar of Georgia. Our loss is their gain.  Ashley is deeply committed to improving justice and I am glad that she’ll be in a place where she will continue with her immense talents toward that purpose.  Her last day with us will be August 24th.

We are subscribing you to this newsletter, but you can unsubscribe below. As always, we welcome your thoughts, ideas, article submissions or ways that we can improve.

Let’s begin.  In this issue, we made a video summary of this past quarter.  We also cover the August 8th Judicial Council meeting which includes pictures of our some of our Law Day Art Contest winners.  Other winners who could not make the ceremony were from Chattooga County, and two students from Walker County.  

The theme for Law Day 2018 was Separation of Powers. This past May, a Reflections on Access to Justice Summit was live streamed and archived on the Judicial Council live stream channel and you can see video highlights here. Amicus Curiae Awards from the Supreme Court of Georgia were given out in August to both Judge Michael Key and Judge Peggy Walker.  Video of both ceremonies is here on the J4C livestream channel.  The JC/AOC participated in a Day on the Bench event in celebration of Law Day with the Flint Judicial Circuit, with Justice David Nahmias and Rep. Andy Welch as keynote speakers. The day ended with a portrait unveiling of Judge Wade Crumbley.

The Judicial Council Standing Committee on Access to Justice–now A2J (successor to the Access, Fairness, Public Trust and Confidence Committee) has announced the availability of new grants for programs to strengthen services to self-represented litigants. In July, NACM came to town and Chief Justice Harris Hines and Cynthia Clanton opened that conference.  In June, Justice Robert Benham delivered the commencement speech for the University of Georgia.

Ashley Stollar wrote profiles of Judge Elizabeth Gobeil and Judge Trent Brown and JC/AOC staffer Ji Zhang including some after hour activities of both judges and staff (see JC/AOC staffer-Jeffrey Thorpe at the National Model of the U.N.).   We learned that Judge Studdard is multi-talented.  Writer/Attorney Karen Worthington profiled Judge Nancy Bills.

At the June State Bar Annual ConferenceChief Justice Hines won an award of his own, but awards were also given in his name to a child welfare attorney and a DFCS case manager for excellent service to our state.  Judge Greg Price received the Lovett award at the same time. Former J4C committee member, Betsy Imes, wrote an article about long time Colquitt County,Georgia foster parents describing their commitment to children and to society. 

We also learned about a new Bard show coming on November 16 and 17. 

Talk to you in September.

Your JC/AOC Courts Journal newsletter team:  Michelle Barclay, Patricia Buonodono, Bruce Shaw and Ashley Stollar.