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Allen Superior Judge John Surbeck receives national judicial award

Jennifer Nelson
August 15, 2012
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Allen Superior Judge John F. Surbeck Jr. received the 2012 William H. Rehnquist Award for Judicial Excellence from the National Center for State Courts, the nonprofit organization announced Tuesday. The award is presented annually to a state court judge who exemplifies the highest level of judicial excellence, integrity, fairness, and professional ethics.

NCSC President Mary C. McQueen said that Surbeck is an inspiration and an example to everyone who works in the justice system.

Surbeck is the founder of reentry courts in Indiana and considered nationally to be a “trailblazer” in this area. The Indiana Legislature in 1999 passed a law known as the Community Transition Statute, which allows each county to develop its own transition program for inmates at the Department of Correction. In 2000, he worked with others to design the Allen County Reentry Court, which opened in July 2001. His decision to create the court came from his professional experience as a public defender from 1972 to 1988. He was appointed to Superior Court in 1988.  

Five years after establishing the court, statistics show that the program has reduced the rate of prisoners reoffending to 34 percent, compared to nearly 60 percent nationally.

“Judge Surbeck has made a tremendous and long-lasting impact on the courts of Indiana and elsewhere and has brought fresh ideas and a proven track record to the seemingly intractable problem of recidivism,” Indiana Chief Justice Brent E. Dickson and Lilia Judson, executive director, Division of State Court Administration, said in a letter of reference for the award.

Surbeck will receive his award from Chief Justice of the United States John G. Roberts Jr. Nov. 15 during a ceremony at the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington, D.C.

 

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  • ????????
    Please give me a brake, this "judge" is nothing more than a puppet on this town 100% manipulated by the procecuting attorney and the fort wayne system is a shame to have this kind of people in our society i have my own reasons I used to think that he was inpartial and fair, but i found out I was wrong, I m glad theres is a real judge at the end of our lives and that is the one we have to worry about, this guy is a shame to our justice system.

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  1. So that none are misinformed by my posting wihtout a non de plume here, please allow me to state that I am NOT an Indiana licensed attorney, although I am an Indiana resident approved to practice law and represent clients in Indiana's fed court of Nth Dist and before the 7th circuit. I remain licensed in KS, since 1996, no discipline. This must be clarified since the IN court records will reveal that I did sit for and pass the Indiana bar last February. Yet be not confused by the fact that I was so allowed to be tested .... I am not, to be clear in the service of my duty to be absolutely candid about this, I AM NOT a member of the Indiana bar, and might never be so licensed given my unrepented from errors of thought documented in this opinion, at fn2, which likely supports Mr Smith's initial post in this thread: http://caselaw.findlaw.com/us-7th-circuit/1592921.html

  2. When I served the State of Kansas as Deputy AG over Consumer Protection & Antitrust for four years, supervising 20 special agents and assistant attorneys general (back before the IBLE denied me the right to practice law in Indiana for not having the right stuff and pretty much crushed my legal career) we had a saying around the office: Resist the lure of the ring!!! It was a take off on Tolkiem, the idea that absolute power (I signed investigative subpoenas as a judge would in many other contexts, no need to show probable cause)could corrupt absolutely. We feared that we would overreach constitutional limits if not reminded, over and over, to be mindful to not do so. Our approach in so challenging one another was Madisonian, as the following quotes from the Father of our Constitution reveal: The essence of Government is power; and power, lodged as it must be in human hands, will ever be liable to abuse. We are right to take alarm at the first experiment upon our liberties. I believe there are more instances of the abridgement of freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments by those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations. Liberty may be endangered by the abuse of liberty, but also by the abuse of power. All men having power ought to be mistrusted. -- James Madison, Federalist Papers and other sources: http://www.constitution.org/jm/jm_quotes.htm RESIST THE LURE OF THE RING ALL YE WITH POLITICAL OR JUDICIAL POWER!

  3. My dear Mr Smith, I respect your opinions and much enjoy your posts here. We do differ on our view of the benefits and viability of the American Experiment in Ordered Liberty. While I do agree that it could be better, and that your points in criticism are well taken, Utopia does indeed mean nowhere. I think Madison, Jefferson, Adams and company got it about as good as it gets in a fallen post-Enlightenment social order. That said, a constitution only protects the citizens if it is followed. We currently have a bevy of public officials and judicial agents who believe that their subjectivism, their personal ideology, their elitist fears and concerns and cause celebs trump the constitutions of our forefathers. This is most troubling. More to follow in the next post on that subject.

  4. Yep I am not Bryan Brown. Bryan you appear to be a bigger believer in the Constitution than I am. Were I still a big believer then I might be using my real name like you. Personally, I am no longer a fan of secularism. I favor the confessional state. In religious mattes, it seems to me that social diversity is chaos and conflict, while uniformity is order and peace.... secularism has been imposed by America on other nations now by force and that has not exactly worked out very well.... I think the American historical experiment with disestablishmentarianism is withering on the vine before our eyes..... Since I do not know if that is OK for an officially licensed lawyer to say, I keep the nom de plume.

  5. I am compelled to announce that I am not posting under any Smith monikers here. That said, the post below does have a certain ring to it that sounds familiar to me: http://www.catholicnewworld.com/cnwonline/2014/0907/cardinal.aspx

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