Seasons Greetings Courts Journal Readers:
The final Judicial Council General Session of 2022 took place on December 9th, was conducted virtually and livestreamed, and has been archived. The JC/AOC draft Annual Report for Fiscal Year 2022 was presented at that meeting, and we invite you to review it before we print it in January. If any corrections are needed, please contact JC/AOC Communications Specialist, Bruce Shaw, whose email is linked below. During her remarks at that meeting, JC/AOC Director Cynthia Clanton reflected on the December 2017 in person Judicial Council meeting that was held at the Carter Center. It started snowing during that meeting, which was so beautiful, but a few members reported a treacherous drive home, which makes us all appreciate the availability of virtual meetings. 2023 will mark the 50th anniversary of the Judicial Council/AOC. We have asked retired Judge Tain Kell, who is so creative, to be our Judicial Fellow for 2023 to help us note that milestone in various ways throughout the year. Stay tuned for details.
Chief Justice Michael Boggs spoke this month at the Biennial Institute for Georgia Legislators on the progress of the Georgia Behavioral Health Reform and Innovation Commission as it seeks to improve our state’s delivery systems for mental health services, particularly the work of the Mental Health Courts and Corrections Subcommittee, which he chairs. Our Chief Justice also met with members of the Council on Criminal Justice’s Veterans Justice Commission, including former U.S. Defense Secretaries Charles Hagel and Leon Panetta, to review recommendations for consideration by Congress to assist veterans who are in the nation’s justice system. In early December, Justice Charlie Bethel gave opening remarks at The Summit: Georgia’s Child Welfare Conference which was most successful this year. December 15th is Bill of Rights Day and we celebrated with a video featuring Judicial Council members reading each of the ten Amendments that comprise the Bill of Rights; that video is partially animated and we’ve gotten great feedback from Georgia teachers that the animation helps students grasp the many rights protected by the Bill of Rights. We also enjoyed all of the pictures of civics education events from around the state, including: Judge Vi Bennett in Wayne County and Chief Judge Brenda Weaver, Judge John Worcester, and Juvenile Court Chief Judge Keith Galligan in Gilmer County. Thank you Judge JaDawnya Baker for speaking at our last All Staff Meeting of 2022. We loved your inspirational message and the delicious cookies you sent us. Also this month, ICYMI, Justice McMillian spoke on a podcast; Justice Colvin conducted mock job interviews; and Justices Warren, McMillian, LaGrua, and Colvin discussed their experiences as women in public service.
We loved the press about Judge Schuster presiding over a moving adoption hearing. The Board of Court Reporting held its final meeting of the year during which two new members–Debra H. Nagy and Jennifer Pope– were sworn in and Chief Judge Brenda Trammel was reappointed. The JC/AOC’s Court Observation Program continued with Gwinnett County Superior Court Judge Warren Davis hosting JC/AOC staffers LaShawn Murphy and Shirley Roberts. Congratulations to the many judges who were sworn-in, reappointed, or promoted this month as we have enjoyed your pictures and posts. Congratulations also to Forsyth County that recently held a ribbon cutting ceremony for its new Juvenile Court building. Finally, we end with a remembrance of Court of Appeals Judge Clyde Reese who left us too soon. Our condolences go out to his family and his colleagues.
Call on us anytime. Talk to you in January.
Your JC/AOC Courts Journal team: Michelle Barclay, Noelle Lagueux-Alvarez, Bruce Shaw, and our contractor, John Ramspott