Tax Court judge to retire Jan. 1

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The state’s first and only judge of the Indiana Tax Court, Judge Thomas G. Fisher, announced today he is stepping down from the bench Jan. 1, 2011.

Judge Fisher was appointed to the Tax Court by Gov. Robert Orr in 1986, and has decided approximately 800 cases.

The 70-year-old was retained for another 10-year term in 2008, but would be unable to complete the term due to the mandatory retirement age of 75.

“Those who worked to create the Indiana Tax Court in 1986 hoped that our state would benefit from thoughtful and predictable application of the tax laws,” said Chief Justice Randall T. Shepard in a statement. “The energy and superb craftsmanship of Judge Thomas Fisher have made this come true. Indiana is a better place for taxpayers, homeowners, and business investors because of the splendid public service he has rendered.”

Judge Fisher is a Michigan native who graduated from Indiana University Maurer School of Law in 1965. In 1967, he was appointed Jasper County prosecutor and re-elected to that office four times before being appointed as Tax Judge. He also served as attorney for the towns of Demotte and Remington and as counsel to the Jasper County Economic Development Commission.

Judge Fisher served as president of the Indiana Prosecuting Attorneys Association and chair of the Indiana Prosecuting Attorneys Council. He also lectured in business law at St. Joseph’s College in Rensselaer.

He’s served as chair of the National Conference of State Tax Judges and was presented with the Larry Lasser Award as the year’s outstanding state tax judge in 2001.

Judge Fisher is the father of Indiana Solicitor General Thomas M. Fisher. He’s married to Barbara Fisher and also has a daughter, Anne Craun, and seven grandchildren.

Now it’s up to the Indiana Judicial Nominating Commission to interview candidates and choose three names to send to Gov. Mitch Daniels to select Judge Fisher’s replacement. The commission will interview candidates Sept. 27, with second-round interviews on Oct. 27.

Judge Fisher’s retirement announcement comes three months after Indiana Supreme Court Justice Theodore Boehm announced he was stepping down Sept. 30. The governor has yet to select his replacement.


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