October 2022

Happy Halloween Courts Journal Readers:

October 15th marks the end of Hispanic Heritage Month, which runs September 15th – October 15th, and we joined in that celebration with a collage of our Georgia judges of Hispanic descent.  We also interviewed relatively newly appointed Judge Ana Maria Martinez who is most inspiring.  The Council of Accountability Court Judges held a very successful conference this month with Chief Justice Boggs as a keynote speaker.  Please watch for the CACJ newsletter next month for pictures of that event.  Chief Justice Boggs also chaired a meeting of the Georgia Familiar Faces Advisory Committee this month.  The Supreme Court of Georgia heard oral argument in Augusta-Richmond and the Court of Appeals of Georgia did the same in Valdosta, allowing for greater public access to those in-person proceedings in an effort to increase public understanding about Georgia’s appellate courts. We enjoyed reading an interview of Judge Ben Land noting Lawyer Pitfalls to Avoid.

Georgia’s appellate courts hit the road in October, holding sessions in Augusta (top) and Valdosta (bottom).
A collage in honor of Hispanic Heritage Month, celebrating some of Georgia’s judges from Hispanic heritage.
An interview with Judge Ana Maria Martinez.

The Judicial Council’s Standing Committee on Access to Justice sponsored a webinar  entitled Legal Education vs. Legal Advice.  Governor Kemp issued a proclamation declaring October Civics Awareness Month and appointed members, including Justice Bethel, to the newly-created Georgia Commission on Civics Education.  We look forward to learning about the work of that commission and we always enjoy getting pictures from Georgia judges who visit their local schools for civics education events, including: Court of Appeals Judge Ben Land; Chief Superior Court Judge Gil McBride; Court of Appeals Chief Judge Brian Rickman; Judge Stephen Dillard and Justice Charlie Bethel.  We have posters and brochures about the Georgia judicial branch which we love to send out upon request.   We loved Noelle’s pictures from the Georgia Council for the Social Studies Conference where she spoke with many of Georgia’s social studies teachers from all over the state in support of our community engagement efforts and connected with our civics education partners–the Georgia Center for Civic Engagement, Georgia Dep’t of Education, and more.

Georgia judges participating in civics activities with students across Georgia.
JC/AOC provided resources for civics visits. Visit our Civics page for more details.

Thank you Judge Morse–President Elect of the Council of Superior Court Judges–for speaking at our All Staff Meeting.  We enjoyed your reflections on mentoring.  With a total of 75 new court reporters gathered to learn from our speakers and seasoned court reporters, the JC/AOC 2022 Learning Essentials About Professionalism (LEAP) seminar was a great successJudge Melanie Cross and Chief Judge John Edwards are the latest additions to our “Meet the Judicial Council Members” webpage.  The legal community prayed for peace and justice at the annual Red Mass on October 13 where former Chief Justice Melton was honored among others.  We also send congratulations to: Judge Amanda Heath for the GA CASA Champion Award; Justice Shawn Ellen LaGrua for being the GSU School of Law 2022 Order of the Barristers Honoree; Judge Michael Key who received the Judge Aaron Cohn Award; Tammy Hardin, Court Administrator of the Catoosa County Juvenile Court, who received the Martha Glaze Service Award; to Chief State Court Judge Pamela South who received the Ogden Doremus–Kent Lawrence Award; Judge Gary Jackson, Laura Kathryne Hogan, and Casey Semple who were honored by the Council of Municipal Court Judges; former PIO  for the Georgia Supreme Court, Jane Hansen, who was honored by the First Amendment Foundation and to Middle Georgia Justice, championed by retired Judge Bill Adams for its very successful “A Taste for Justice” event.  Finally, it is not too late to nominate #galawyers or #gajudges for the prestigious Justice Robert Benham Award for Community Service.  Nominations may be made by anyone and the deadline is November 11th. 

Judge John Morse, Jr. visited the JC/AOC All Staff Meeting in October.
Judicial Council member profile of Judge Melanie Cross.
Judicial Council member profile of Chief Judge John Edwards, Jr.

Call on us anytime.  Talk to you in November.

Your JC/AOC Courts Journal team:  Michelle BarclayNoelle Lagueux-AlvarezBruce Shaw, and our contractor, John Ramspott