Hon. Raymond J. Conklin
The Honorable Raymond J. Conklin
, 64, of Moline, gourmet chef, bread baker extraordinaire and master gardener, died July 4, 2014, at his home, surrounded by his family, after living for nine months with Stage IV cancer.
Raymond James Conklin was born Sept. 17, 1949, in Rockford, Ill., to Raymond and Doral (Oskins) Conklin. On Sept. 13, 1986, in Davenport, he married Renee Fallow, who survives.
Ray attended St. Olaf College, Minnesota, and received his undergraduate degree and Juris Doctorate from University of Iowa, Iowa City, graduating Summa Cum Laude. He was very proud of the fact that he only missed one point on his LSAT exam to get into law school. He was a partner at Robertson & Conklin Law Offices for many years. In 2004, he was appointed Associate Judge to the 14th Judicial Circuit Court, State of Illinois. He also was appointed to the Illinois Special Supreme Court Advisory Committee for Justice & Mental Health Planning. He held memberships in the Illinois Judges Association, Illinois State Bar Association, Rock Island County Bar Association and Illinois Association of Drug Court Professionals.
Throughout Ray’s life, he was a champion of social justice in both his career as a judge, and his personal life, where he focused on helping those without a voice. He was the first judge and co-founder of Rock Island County Mental Health Court, and believed that an integrated approach combining the justice system with mental health services was the key to reducing repeat offenders with mental illnesses.