Three decades of finalists

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Each time a vacancy occurs on the Indiana Supreme Court, applicants go before the Indiana Judicial Nominating Commission to face questions about why they should be elevated to the highest bench in the state judiciary. Three individuals are chosen as finalists and those names are sent to the governor, who makes the final decision. Here is a look at those who’ve been finalists in the past 25 years and their positions or titles at that time.

2010 – Seat being vacated by Justice Theodore R. Boehm

34 applicants; 9 semi-finalists

• Hon. Steven H. David, Boone Circuit Court

• Hon. Robyn L. Moberly, Marion Superior Court

• Karl Mulvaney, Indianaplis attorney

Gov. Mitch Daniels has 60 days in which to select the next justice.


1999 – Seat vacated by Justice Myra Selby

25 initial applicants; 7 semi-finalists

• Hon. Robert D. Rucker, Indiana Court of Appeals; chosen by Gov. Frank O’Bannon

• Hon. Nancy Vaidik, Porter Superior Court

• Mary Beth Ramey, Indianapolis attorney


1996 – Seat vacated by Justice Richard DeBruler

23 or 24 initial applicants; 9 semi-finalists

• Theodore R. Boehm, Indianapolis attorney; chosen by Gov. Evan Bayh

• Hon. Sanford M. Brook, St. Joseph Superior Court

• Hon. Edward Najam, Indiana Court of Appeals


1994 – Seat vacated by Justice Richard Givan

10 initial applicants but extended deadline resulted in14 applicants; 6 semi-finalists

• Myra C. Selby, Indianapolis attorney; chosen by Gov. Bayh

• Hon. Betty A. Barteau, Indiana Court of Appeals

• Anne Marie Sedwick, Jeffersonville attorney


1993 – Seat vacated by Justice Jon D. Krahulik

28 applicants for opening on both the Supreme Court and the Indiana Court of Appeals; 10 semi-finalists

• Frank E. Sullivan, Indianapolis attorney; chosen by Gov. Bayh

• Hon. Betty A. Barteau, Indiana Court of Appeals

• Hon. James S. Kirsch, Marion Superior Court


1990 – Seat vacated by Justice Alfred Pivarnik

13 applicants; 5 semi-finalists

• Jon D. Krahulik, Indianapolis attorney; chosen by Gov. Bayh

• Hon. John G. Baker, Indiana Court of Appeals

• Hon. Jeanne Jourdan, St. Joseph Superior Court


1985/1986 – Seat vacated by Justice Dixon Prentice

Number of applicants and semi-finalists not known or a matter of public record

• Brent E. Dickson, Lafayette attorney; chosen by Gov. Robert Orr

• Hon. Robert Staton, Indiana Court of Appeals

• Lila J. Cornell, Indianapolis attorney


1985 – Seat vacated by Justice Donald Hunter

36 applicants; number of semi-finalists not known or a matter of matter of public record

• Hon. Randall T. Shepard, Vanderburgh Superior Court; chosen by Gov. Orr

• Patrick Woods Harrison, Columbus attorney

• Hon. Raymond Thomas Green, Bartholomew Circuit Court

Prior to that time, the last Indiana Supreme Court opening came in 1977 when Justice Pivarnik replaced Justice Norman Arterburn.

Source: IL archives and research


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  1. Great observation Smith. By my lights, speaking personally, they already have. They counted my religious perspective in a pro-life context as a symptom of mental illness and then violated all semblance of due process to banish me for life from the Indiana bar. The headline reveals the truth of the Hoosier elite's animus. Details here: Denied 2016 petition for cert (this time around): (“2016Pet”) Amicus brief 2016: (“2016Amici”) As many may recall, I was banned for five years for failing to "repent" of my religious views on life and the law when a bar examiner demanded it of me, resulting in a time out to reconsider my "clinging." The time out did not work, so now I am banned for life. Here is the five year time out order: Denied 2010 petition for cert (from the 2009 denial and five year banishment): (“2010Pet”) Read this quickly if you are going to read it, the elites will likely demand it be pulled down or pile comments on to bury it. (As they have buried me.)

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