March 2019

Greetings Georgia Courts Journal readers:

Many newsworthy items happened in the past 30 days and there are 8 legislative days left in this year’s session – read the JC/AOC weekly reports here.  But first, we would like to hear from you. Law Day is right around the corner (May 1st) and we would like to know who is hosting a Law Day Event. If you are, please let us know so we can feature your event or speech in a future Courts Journal.

Now the news. Chief Justice Melton announced the establishment of the Judicial Council  Ad Hoc Committee to Prevent Sexual Harassment in the Judicial Branch of Government. A variety of profiles were published about the Chief Justice last month as well, including the Daily Report and the University of Georgia. Presiding Justice Nahmias spoke to a national audience about improving justice for children and Supreme Court staff attorney Kevin Wilson serenaded the crowd to welcome them at the same event. Presiding Justice Nahmias also presented on a panel for the State Bar of Georgia’s Media and Judiciary Conference.  Justice Boggs delivered the keynote address to the 2019 class of Leadership DeKalb County.   Recently, Judge McFadden visited the AOC and spoke about his journey to the Bench.  Chief Justice Melton announced a May 3 training for judges called “Judicial Work at the Interface of Mental Health and Criminal Justice” which is now open for registration.

March is a celebration of Women’s History which led AOC staffer Aimee Maxwell to interview Justice Sarah Hawkins Warren. Aimee also profiled new AOC staffer, Tiffanie Robinson and talked with Judge Sweat and Judge Amero to write an article about the Athens-Clarke County Justice Mental Health Collaborative.  

The Juvenile Data Exchange Committee (JDEX)  hosted a meeting as did the Judicial Workload Assessment Committee. The Committee on Justice for Children (J4C) held a Multi-Disciplinary Child Abuse and Neglect Institute for Forsyth and Dawson counties as well as a Court Improvement meeting with over 15 juvenile court judges sharing best practices.  Former J4C committee member Betsy Imes wrote an article in celebration of Social Work Month in March.  The Board of Court Reporting Chair Chief Judge John K. Edwards Jr. of Lowndes County State Court swore in their newest member. Next month the JC/AOC Access to Justice Committee will hold an Expungement Clinic hosted in Albany, Georgia, and Judge Goss will be delivering the Talarico Lecture on March 19th at the University of Georgia.

Judge Juliette Scales

The Chief Justice’s Commission on Professionalism hosted the 20th Annual Justice Robert Benham Awards for Community Service which took place at Georgia State University. The Lookout Mountain Judicial Circuit celebrated its 70th anniversary at the end of February.  The GSU Center for Access to Justice held its second annual State of the South Conference and videos from the speakers are available for viewing.  GSU is also consulting with the Georgia Commission on Child Support. Atlanta’s NPR station interviewed Judge Ozburn about courthouse security.  Take a look at our new “Meet the Judicial Council Members” page, this month we feature Judge Scales. Finally, if you missed any of our profiles or posts for February’s African American History Month, we did a summary here.

Talk to you in April 

Your JC/AOC Courts Journal newsletter team:  Michelle Barclay, Patricia Buonodono, Siarra Carr, Aimee Maxwell and Bruce Shaw