Chief justice to give his final State of the Judiciary

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Indiana Chief Justice Randall T. Shepard on Wednesday will give his annual State of the Judiciary address to a joint session of the Indiana General Assembly, the final time he will do so before retiring in March.

The chief justice is scheduled to speak at 2 p.m. Jan. 11 in the Indiana House of Representatives. The speech will be webcast live at, and Indiana Public Broadcasting Stations will air the address later this week or next week.

This year’s address, titled “On the Way to Something Better,” will focus on the process of building a more unified and purposeful court system. The chief justice plans to cite fields such as family law and criminal justice to explain why the courts should not operate as a series of silos, but instead be able to continue moving toward a connected and collaborative judicial system.

Shepard has, on occasion, announced bold initiatives, but it’s unknown whether his final address will include areas he views as unfinished business that need attention.

The 2012 State of the Judiciary marks the 25th time Shepard has given the annual address. He became chief justice in March 1987. A list of the annual speeches that Shepard has delivered can be viewed online.

Shepard announced in December he plans to leave the state’s highest court, effective March 4. The application process is underway for his successor and applicants must apply by Jan. 27. The Judicial Nominating Commission will interview applicants in February and the governor will choose the next justice. Once that happens, the commission will consider which of the five justices should be the next chief justice.



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  1. This is ridiculous. Most JDs not practicing law don't know squat to justify calling themselves a lawyer. Maybe they should try visiting the inside of a courtroom before they go around calling themselves lawyers. This kind of promotional BS just increases the volume of people with JDs that are underqualified thereby dragging all the rest of us down likewise.

  2. I think it is safe to say that those Hoosier's with the most confidence in the Indiana judicial system are those Hoosier's who have never had the displeasure of dealing with the Hoosier court system.

  3. I have an open CHINS case I failed a urine screen I have since got clean completed IOP classes now in after care passed home inspection my x sister in law has my children I still don't even have unsupervised when I have been clean for over 4 months my x sister wants to keep the lids for good n has my case working with her I just discovered n have proof that at one of my hearing dcs case worker stated in court to the judge that a screen was dirty which caused me not to have unsupervised this was at the beginning two weeks after my initial screen I thought the weed could have still been in my system was upset because they were suppose to check levels n see if it was going down since this was only a few weeks after initial instead they said dirty I recently requested all of my screens from redwood because I take prescriptions that will show up n I was having my doctor look at levels to verify that matched what I was prescripted because dcs case worker accused me of abuseing when I got my screens I found out that screen I took that dcs case worker stated in court to judge that caused me to not get granted unsupervised was actually negative what can I do about this this is a serious issue saying a parent failed a screen in court to judge when they didn't please advise

  4. I have a degree at law, recent MS in regulatory studies. Licensed in KS, admitted b4 S& 7th circuit, but not to Indiana bar due to political correctness. Blacklisted, nearly unemployable due to hostile state action. Big Idea: Headwinds can overcome, esp for those not within the contours of the bell curve, the Lego Movie happiness set forth above. That said, even without the blacklisting for holding ideas unacceptable to the Glorious State, I think the idea presented above that a law degree open many vistas other than being a galley slave to elitist lawyers is pretty much laughable. (Did the law professors of Indiana pay for this to be published?)

  5. Joe, you might want to do some reading on the fate of Hoosier whistleblowers before you get your expectations raised up.