Judge Jenny Pitts Manier Receives IJA Excellence in Public Information and Education Award
St. Joseph County Superior Court Judge Jenny Pitts Manier was awarded the Indiana Judges Association’s Excellence in Public Information and Education Award. Judge Manier was recognized for her leadership of “One Bar, One Book,” a monthly study group sponsored by the St. Joseph County Bar Association. The group has read approximately three dozen books that focus on racial bias and poverty. Judge Manier has organized two community symposiums on these issues.
Olivia Covington Receives Indiana Judges Association’s Media Award
Indiana Lawyer managing editor Olivia Covington was awarded the Indiana Judges Association’s Media Award for her coverage of Indiana’s problem-solving courts. Covington was honored at the IJA’s annual meeting for her story on the establishment of Indiana’s 100 problem-solving courts, while explaining their roles in addressing an array of problems in local communities from drug abuse to veterans issues to families in crisis.
Magistrate Mary DeBoer Appointed Porter Circuit Court Judge
Mary DeBoer has been appointed Judge of the Porter County Circuit Court succeeding Judge Mary Harper, who will retire on December 31. Following her graduation from law school, DeBoer served as a Deputy Prosecutor in Starke and Porter counties. She was also engaged in private practice. Since 2011, she has served as a Magistrate for the Porter County Superior Courts in Valparaiso. DeBoer earned her undergraduate degree from Western Michigan University and her law degree from Valparaiso University of Law.
Nathan Nikirk Appointed Lawrence Circuit Court Judge
Nathan Nikirk was appointed Judge of the Lawrence County Circuit Court succeeding Judge Andrea McCord. Nikirk previously served as the juvenile referee and as a part-time public defender in Lawrence County. He also practiced law privately. Nikirk was a middle school teacher in Seymour prior to attending law school. He earned his Bachelor of Science Degree from Indiana University and his law degree from Western Michigan University Cooley Law School.
Judge Gina L. Jones Appointed Lake Superior Court Judge
Gina L. Jones has been appointed Judge of the Lake County Superior Court succeeding Judge John R. Pera who retired in June. Jones had been serving as a judge for the Merrillville Town Court for eight years. She served as Executive Director of the Child Support Division in the Lake County Prosecutor’s Office from 2003-2010. Jones is a native of Gary, earning her bachelor’s degree from Indiana University and law degree from Valparaiso University School of Law.
Judges Darrin Dolehanty and Andrea Trevino Appointed to Indiana Criminal Institute Board of Trustees
Governor Eric Holcomb appointed The Honorable Darrin Dolehanty (Richmond), Judge of the Wayne Superior Court III, and The Honorable Andrea Trevino (Fort Wayne), Judge of the Allen Superior Court Family Relations Division. They will serve until September 30, 2022.
Lisa L. Swaim Appointed Cass Superior Court Judge
Lisa Swaim has been appointed Judge of the Cass County Superior Court succeeding the Honorable Richard A. Maughmer. Swaim was the Cass County Prosecutor having been elected in 2015 after serving in that office since 2001. She had also served as a deputy prosecutor in Marion County. She earned her undergraduate degree from Ball State University and her law degree from Indiana University McKinney School of Law.
IU and Monroe County Participate in National Probation Research
The City University of New York’s Institute for State and Local Governance, partnering with Arnold Ventures, announced that the Monroe Circuit Court would join nine other judicial jurisdictions across the country participating in the Reducing Revocations Challenge. Indiana University and the Monroe Circuit Court will partner as an “action research team” researching why revocations occur and how they can be prevented.
Judge Richard A. Maughmer
Cass County Superior Court II Judge Richard A. Maughmer passed away unexpectedly on September 16. He received both his undergraduate and law degree from the University of Nebraska and established a law practice in Logansport. He was elected judge of Cass Superior Court II in November 2000. Maughmer was also a retired air force colonel with 37 years of service in both active and reserve capacity.
Indiana Innovation Initiative
Chief Justice Loretta Rush signed an order on September 24 creating the Indiana Innovation Initiative, a group to foster innovation within the legal profession. Justice Steven David chairs the group, which includes two subgroups: a Family Law Task Force and a Technology Working Group. Members of the Initiative will identify opportunities to increase efficiency and accessibility through technology, analysis of reform, and establishing pilot programs related to reform.
The Court’s action will maintain Indiana’s place as a national leader in legal reform and will work in tandem with other stakeholders in the legal profession to ultimately provide a written report to the Supreme Court by July 1, 2021.