Longest-serving COA judge dies Thursday

October 1, 2015

Patrick D. Sullivan, the longest-serving Indiana Court of Appeals judge in the court’s history, died Thursday after a brief illness, the court announced. He was 83.

Sullivan was the last serving member to have won popular election to the court, first elected in 1968 and then subsequently retained 4 times. He retired in 2007 and served from that time until his death as a senior judge.

“Judge Sullivan was a judge’s judge – he loved the law and loved serving the people of the state of Indiana,” Court of Appeals Chief Judge Nancy H. Vaidik said. “He will be greatly missed, but he leaves behind an enormous body of scholarly work that will forever guide future generations of Indiana lawyers and judges.”

While on the court, Sullivan served on the Supreme Court Advisory Committee on Rules of Practice and Procedure and as an adjunct professor and teacher at Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law and Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis.

Sullivan was born in Huntington, Indiana, and served for two years in the U.S. Navy during the Korean War. He received his law degree from Washington and Lee in Virginia in 1958. After graduation, he returned to Indiana where he served as a deputy Indiana attorney general, worked in private practice, and was elected as a Marion County civil court judge before joining the appellate court.

Sullivan was a member of the Indiana Judges Association, the Appellate Judges Conference of the American Bar Association, the Indianapolis Bar Association and the American Bar Association. He also served on the Board of Governors of the Indiana State Bar Association.

A memorial service is pending.


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