Chief Justice Mike Heavican announces the first meeting of the Nebraska Supreme Court Judicial Leadership Program. The Judicial Branch Education (JBE) program, designed for Nebraska state trial court judges who have been on the bench between two and seven years, is intended to prepare judges to assume a leadership role in the branch.
The Nebraska judiciary faces ongoing issues involving changing demographics, population shifts, gaps in the availability of legal services, and continuing financial challenges. Increasingly, trial court judges are taking responsibility for the overall health of the judicial institution and its effectiveness at dispensing justice.
Through the leadership program, participating judges are exposed to current trends and develop tools to respond to emerging issues.
Attending the inaugural session are: Susan Bazis, Timothy Burns, Jeffrey Funke, Russell Harford, James Kube, Kris Mickey, Anne Paine, Michael Piccolo, Ross Stoffer, and Paul Vaughan. Judges who are in the program but not able to attend the September session include Michael Burns, Leo Dobrovolny, Marcie Keim, Leigh Ann Retelsdof, and Derek Weimer.
The group is hosted by JBE and scheduled to meet semi-monthly during which time they will participate in hands-on leadership projects. Through the course of the year’s leadership program, each judge will identify several issues facing their court and look for an actual project to implement within their district.
Photo: Meeting hosts, Retired Judge Patricia Lamberty (far right, black jacket) State Court Administrator Janice Walker (far right) and Judicial Branch Education Director Carole McMahon-Boies prepare as judges join the morning leadership session.