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Judicial Appointments

Chief Justice Thomas L. Kilbride announced on Friday that the Illinois Supreme Court has appointed Thomas Keith to fill a judicial vacancy for the Stark County Resident Circuit Court Judge in the 10th Judicial Circuit.

The Illinois Supreme Court announced Wednesday the appointment of Morgan County State's Attorney Chris E. Reif as a resident circuit judge in the Seventh Judicial Circuit.

Mr. Reif was appointed to fill the Circuit Court vacancy created by the retirement of Judge Richard T. Mitchell on January 2. The appointment is effective March 22, 2013 and will expire December 1, 2014, when the position will be filled by the 2014 General Election.

Supreme Court Justice Rita B. Garman recommended the appointment to the Supreme Court after a review process by a special citizen screening committee.

"I am absolutely thrilled and honored with the appointment," Mr. Reif said. "I look forward to serving the citizens of Morgan County and will continue to put forth the same work effort as I have as state's attorney for 8+ years. I will uphold the standards expected of a circuit court judge.

"I thank the Supreme Court and Justice Garman for the opportunity."

Mr. Reif graduated from Illinois State University in 1993 with a degree in criminal justice. He received his juris doctor degree from Southern Illinois University School of Law in 1998. After graduation, Mr. Reif was hired as an associate with the law firm then known as Grosboll, Becker, Tice & Smith and was engaged in the general practice of law. He became a named partner of the firm within a couple of years and worked there until 2004.

Michael J. Tardy, Director of the Administrative Office of the Illinois Courts, announced Wednesday that the circuit judges of the 20th Judicial Circuit voted to select Joseph D. Christ and Christopher T. Kolker as associate judges of the 20th Judicial Circuit. As no candidate received a majority of votes to fill the third vacancy, a runoff is necessary.

Mr. Christ received his undergraduate degrees in 1986 from Illinois State University in Normal and his Juris Doctor in 1993 from the Cooley Law School in Lansing, Michigan. Mr. Christ is currently affiliated with the St. Clair County State's Attorney's Office in Belleville.

Mr. Kolker received his undergraduate degree in 1989 from Arizona State University in Tempe, Arizona and his Juris Doctor in 1998 from Southern Illinois University in Carbondale. Mr. Kolker is currently engaged in practice with the Kolker Law Offices, P.C., in Belleville.

Christine A. Downs
Christine A. Downs
Michael J. Tardy, Director of the Administrative Office of the Illinois Courts, announced Wednesday that the Sixteenth Judicial Circuit judges voted to select Christine A. Downs as an associate judge of the Sixteenth Judicial Circuit.

Ms. Downs received her undergraduate degree in 1994 from the University of Illinois and her Juris Doctor in 1997 from Loyola University in Chicago. Ms. Downs is currently affiliated with Collison & O'Connor, Ltd. in Chicago.

Michael J. Tardy, Director of the Administrative Office of the Illinois Courts, announced Wednesday that the Tenth Judicial Circuit judges voted to select Timothy J. Cusack as an associate judge of the Tenth Judicial Circuit.

Mr. Cusack received his undergraduate degree in 1984 from Marquette University in Milwaukee, and his Juris Doctor in 1989 from Northern Illinois University in DeKalb. Mr. Cusack is currently affiliated with the Peoria County Public Defender's Office in Peoria.

Illinois Supreme Court Justice Rita B. Garman will administer the judicial oath of office to Circuit Judge Lisa Holder White, this time as an Appellate Court justice, during her swearing-in ceremony starting at 9:30 a.m. on Monday, January 14 in the Ceremonial Courtroom of the Supreme Court Building.

"Just over four years ago, I had the privilege of swearing in Lisa Holder White as a circuit judge in the Sixth Judicial Circuit," Justice Garman said. "Since that time, she has earned the respect and admiration of her colleagues on the bench and of the attorneys who appear before her. More importantly, she has earned the respect of the community she serves.

Michael J. Tardy, Director of the Administrative Office of the Illinois Courts, announced today that the Sixteenth Judicial Circuit judges voted to select Elizabeth K. Flood and Alice C. Tracy as associate judges of the Sixteenth Judicial Circuit.

Ms. Flood received her undergraduate degree in 1992 from the University of Illinois, Urbana, and her Juris Doctor in 1995 from the University of Illinois. Ms. Flood is currently affiliated with the Kane County State's Attorney's Office in St. Charles.

Ms. Tracy received her undergraduate degree in 1982 from Boston College, and her Juris Doctor in 1986 from John Marshall Law. Ms. Tracy is currently affiliated with the Kane County State's Attorney's Office in St. Charles.

The current term of office of the Honorable Byron G. Cudmore, incumbent United States Magistrate Judge for the Central District of Illinois at Springfield, is due to expire August 31, 2013. The United States District Court is required by law to establish a panel of citizens to consider the reappointment of the magistrate judge to a new eight-year term.

The Illinois Supreme Court announced on Tuesday that the Hon. Robert G. Kleeman, Associate Judge of the 18th Judicial Circuit, is appointed Circuit Judge of the 18th Judicial Circuit, at Large, to the position presently held by the Honorable Hollis L. Webster, who is retiring from judicial office on Dec. 31, 2012.

This appointment is effective Feb. 4, 2013, and terminates on Dec. 1, 2014.

René Cruz
René Cruz
The Illinois Supreme Court announced Monday that the Sixteenth Judicial Circuit judges voted to select René Cruz as an associate judge of the Sixteenth Judicial Circuit.

Mr. Cruz received his undergraduate degree in 1992 from The Citadel, Military College of South Carolina in Charleston, South Carolina, and his Juris Doctor in 1995 from Northern Illinois University in DeKalb. Mr. Cruz is currently engaged in practice with the Law Offices of Gil & Cruz in Aurora.