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Central Illinois

Thomas C. Maas
Thomas C. Maas
Thomas Conway Maas, 61, of Fairview passed away peacefully at home on Saturday, April 14, 2012, after a two-year battle with a brain tumor.

He was born Sept. 23, 1950, in Wausau, Wis., to Mary and Conway Maas. He married Deon (Lock) Maas on June 30, 1979, in rural Farmington. She survives.

Thomas graduated from the University of Wisconsin at Oshkosh in 1973 and Chicago Kent College of Law in 1976.

He worked as an assistant state's attorney in Fulton County from 1976 to 1980. For the remainder of his law career, he was in private practice as a partner with John Potter, then as sole owner of Baudino, Potter & Maas, finally serving as "of counsel" to Froehling, Weber & Schell, LLP. Because he so loved the practice of law, he worked part time through his illness, until six weeks before his death. His primary practice was family and criminal law.

In service to his community, he taught several criminal and juvenile law classes at Spoon River College, was the former president of the Fulton County Bar Association, the Farmington Rotary, the Illinois Association of Boards of Health and the F.C.R.C Board of Directors. He was a charter member of the Fulton County CASA group, a past Cub Scoutmaster and a past board member of the Spoon River College Foundation. During his 33-year membership of the Lincoln Douglas Toastmasters, he held many offices, including division governor of District 54 Toastmasters and participated in many speech contests.


Justice Rita B. Garman of the Supreme Court of Illinois has begun an application process for a Circuit Court vacancy in the Sixth Judicial Circuit. The vacancy will be created by the retirement of Judge John P. Shonkwiler on July 31, 2012. Judge Shonkwiler has been a resident circuit judge since 1974.

Under the Illinois Constitution, judicial vacancies are filled by Supreme Court appointment. The application process will lead to final Court approval. The applicants will undergo an evaluation and screening process.

Notice of the vacancy has been posted in courthouses throughout the Circuit. The application form and instructions may be obtained by visiting the Illinois Supreme Court’s website at www.state.il.us/court and follow the instructions on the “Latest News” scroller announcing the Sixth Judicial Circuit vacancy. Original applications must be submitted via mail to:

  • Supreme Court of Illinois
  • attn.: Mrs. Mary Hurley
  • 3607 North Vermilion, Suite 1
  • Danville, Illinois 61832

No electronic or facsimile applications will be accepted.

Deadline for submission of applications is Tuesday, June 12, 2012. The person appointed to fill the vacancy will serve until the position is filled by election in November, 2014. To be eligible for consideration for appointment, the applicant must be a lawyer licensed to practice law in Illinois.

The Sixth Judicial Circuit is comprised of Champaign, DeWitt, Douglas, Macon, Moultrie and Piatt counties.

Quincy University's new Mock Trial Courtroom
Quincy University's new Mock Trial Courtroom
Quincy University recently hosted oral arguments from the Fourth Appellate Court. The proceedings took place in the university's new mock trial courtroom. Arguments were heard before the current president of the Illinois Judges Association, Appellate Judge Carol Pope, Appellate Judge John W. Turner of Lincoln, and Appellate Judge Robert Cook of Quincy. Several Quincy University Pre-law students attended and joined in a lunch with the Judges following the proceedings.

Local media and area judges also attended to observe how the media might handle a local Circuit Court session. In January the Illinois Supreme Court announced it would allow video recordings as a pilot program across the state. Chief Circuit Judges can decide whether or not to allow the cameras in the courtroom. The 8th Judicial Circuit Court, which serves Adams County, has yet to approve courtroom cameras.

Franklin M. Hartzell
Franklin M. Hartzell
Franklin M. Hartzell, 88, a lifelong resident and prominent Carthage attorney, died Tuesday evening in his home.

He was born on Aug. 24, 1923, in Carthage, a son of Franklin M. Sr. and Mary Ferris Hartzell. On May 18, 1946, he was married to Eleanore Gaebe at her family's farm in Addieville. Ellie preceded him in death on Aug. 12, 2006.

Franklin lived his entire life in Carthage, attending Carthage schools, graduating from Carthage High School and then obtaining his undergraduate in 1948 and LLB degree in 1950 from the University of Illinois. Franklin served his country during World War II and was later recalled to serve in the Korean Conflict, during which times he was the recipient of the Bronze Star and Purple Heart. He was a lifelong member of the First Presbyterian Church in Carthage, where he currently served as chairman of the Endowment Committee. Over the course of his lifetime he has served in nearly every office of the church and was a deacon and elder. In his youth he was a Boy Scout, reaching the rank of Eagle Scout.

Discover how you can address the issues most commonly faced in the criminal courts today!

Has the new Illinois Evidence Code changed today’s criminal practice? Join us in Springfield on May 4th for this seminar that discusses case law and legislation updates that Illinois attorneys need to know to be effective in the courtroom. Both new attorneys and experienced practitioners will benefit from the following program topics: Fourth and Fifth Amendment cases; pre-trial and trial issues involving the Sixth Amendment; the ethical challenges involving the use of social media (such as Facebook and Twitter); branding your practice and establishing a niche in the market; and recent amendments relating to the use of breath interlock devices and monitored device driving permits.

The program is presented by the ISBA Criminal Justice Section and qualifies for 5.5 MCLE credit hours, including 1.0 PMCLE credit (subject to approval).

Click here for more information and to register.

Sponsoring Committee Chair Lauren DeJong (left) and ISBA Board member Carl Draper (right) congratulate Hinsdale Central High School's mock trial team on its victory.
Sponsoring Committee Chair Lauren DeJong (left) and ISBA Board member Carl Draper (right) congratulate Hinsdale Central High School's mock trial team on its victory.

Hinsdale Central High School placed first in the 30th annual Illinois State Bar Association High School Mock Trial Invitational held at the University of Illinois at Springfield on Friday and Saturday, March 30 and 31, 2012.

Timothy Christian High School in Elmhurst came in second place, and third place went to St. Charles North High School. Teams from 44 Illinois high schools traveled to Springfield to participate in the program.

Hinsdale Central High School will represent the state of Illinois at the National High School Mock Trial Championship which will be held in Albuquerque, New Mexico, May 3-6, 2012.

“The mock trial program is a rare opportunity for Illinois high school students to compete in a high-level academic endeavor,” says Lauren E. DeJong of Park Ridge, chair of the ISBA’s Standing Committee on Law Related Education for the Public, which conducts the program.

Evanston Township High School in Evanston and Hinsdale Central High School in Hinsdale tied for the highest team average on the Written Law Exam, and Andrea Shen, from Lake Forest Academy in Lake Forest, had the highest individual test score.

Richard E. Barber
Richard E. Barber
Richard E. "Rick" Barber, 59, passed away Monday, Feb. 20, 2012, at his home in Galesburg.

Rick was born July 21, 1952, in Champaign, to Mabel C. (Entwistle) Barber and Marion E. Barber. He graduated in 1974 from the University of Illinois with a B.S. in communications. While at Illinois, Rick met his future wife, Mary Hanlon, and the two were married in 1974.

Rick received a J.D. in 1979 from the University of Tulsa College of Law. That same year he came to Galesburg and joined the law firm of Hanlon & Ruedig, where he later became a name partner. In addition to his private practice, Rick served as corporation counsel for the city of Galesburg, beginning in 1980, and as a Chapter 7 bankruptcy trustee for the Central District of Illinois, beginning in 1982.

Additionally, Rick served as an officer in the Knox County Bar Association, and was a member of Jaycees and Noon Lions Club.
Rick is survived by his wife, Mary; his two children, Kathleen Barber and David Barber; and his sister, Mary (Mike) Pugh.
Rick will long be remembered by all who knew him for his great wit, his warmth, his happiness in serving others, and his love for his family and friends.

Burke Miller, 88, Lincoln, died at 11:10 a.m. Thursday (March 8, 2012) at Abraham Lincoln Memorial Hospital, Lincoln.

Burke was born Oct. 5, 1923, in Lincoln, the son of Leland and Catherine Burke Miller.

Burke attended grade school and high school in Lincoln. He graduated from Carleton College in Northfield, Minn., in 1943 and the University of Chicago Law School in 1945. He returned to Lincoln to join his father as third generation in the family’s law firm and actively practiced until December 1996, retiring after 50 years.

He was a longtime member of Holy Family Parish. He belonged to the Illinois State Bar Association, Logan County Bar Association, Lincoln Elks Club, Logan County Farm Bureau and Knights of Columbus. He also served on the board of directors of Lincoln Savings and Loan Association.

Burke had a passion for farming and enjoyed watching the crops mature. He was an avid and knowledgeable sports fan who enjoyed watching spring training baseball each year with his nephews in the warmth of the Tucson sun.

He will be dearly missed by his wife, family and friends, and will be remembered for his acts of simple kindness, whether it be returning from the grocery store surprising his family with a bouquet of fresh flowers and a homemade pie, or striking up a sports-related conversation with a newly found friend. Burke’s personality radiated warmth and kindness to all who had the privilege of knowing him.

He is survived by two children, Stephen Miller, Lincoln, and Rebecca (Peter) Pirmann, Carbondale.

Teams from 45 high schools statewide will participate in the 30th annual Illinois State Bar Association (ISBA) High School Mock Trial Invitational Friday and Saturday, March 30 and 31 at the University of Illinois at Springfield, Public Affairs Center – Lower Level, One University Plaza, in Springfield.

The eight top-scoring teams will compete in the final round on Saturday, March 31, for the state championship. The winner will represent Illinois at the National High School Mock Trial Championship in Albuquerque, New Mexico, May 3-6, 2012. [The trials will begin Friday, March 30, at 11:15 a.m. and will continue through Saturday afternoon. The final round will begin at approximately 3:30 p.m. on Saturday, March 31].

“The mock trial program is a rare opportunity for Illinois high school students to compete in a high-level academic endeavor,” says Lauren E. DeJong of Park Ridge, chair of the ISBA’s Standing Committee on Law Related Education for the Public, which conducts the program.

“Students must analyze complex information, apply logic and deductive reasoning, communicate effectively, and use other critical thinking skills in the trial scenario,” she continued. “The ISBA offers this opportunity for the students to come together, after months of hard work and preparation, to challenge each other and stimulate discussion.”

Donald D. Knuckey Sr., 63, of Lacon, died Feb. 5, 2012 at OSF St. Francis Medical Center, Peoria.

Mr. Knuckey was born July 30, 1948 in Scales Mound to David and Charlotte (Hurst) Knuckey.

Mr. Knuckey served his country in the U.S. Army Reserves and retired from the Army after 20 years. He graduated from Loyola Law School and practiced law in Henry for many years. He also served as Marshall County State's Attorney for 20 years and was engaged in farming. He attended Immaculate Conception Church, Lacon and was a Fourth Degree Knight of the Knights of Columbus at Immaculate Conception. He also was a member of the Henry American Legion.

Survivors include his mother, Charlotte Knuckey, of Peru; four children, Margaret (Christopher) Johnson of Morton, Rosemary (Michael) Frawley of Putnam, Donald D. (Lucille) Knuckey, Jr. of Henry and Anthony Knuckey of Chicago; eight grandchildren, Franklin, Henry, Lucas, Lauren Rose, Mikayla, Taylor, Elizabeth and Isabelle; one brother, James (Connie) Knuckey of Moline; and three sisters, Linda Lambel of McHenry, Barbara (Dale) Holloway of Mendota and Donna (Bill) Donna of Magnolia.

He was preceded in death by his father.
Memorials may be directed to the Henry American Legion or the Henry Food Pantry.