Elkhart County attorney recognized with bar foundation honor

July 27, 2016

Goshen attorney and former Indiana legislator John Ulmer has been selected for the 2016 Legendary Lawyer Award by the Fellows of the Indiana Bar Foundation.

Ulmer, of counsel at Yoder Ainlay Ulmer & Buckingham LLP, has practiced law since 1963. He represented Elkhart County in the Indiana House of Representatives from 1998 to 2008 and served in various capacities for the Indiana bar and judiciary.

The Legendary Lawyer Award is given annually to a Fellow of the Indiana Bar Foundation who has practice for 50 or more years and has a distinguished legal complemented by active community service.

“He is the reason Indiana’s appellate courts remain a well-respected judiciary and a retention election state,” Court of Appeals Judge Margret Robb wrote in her letter of support. “(He is) a strong believer in the constitutional provisions of three co-equal branches of government” which includes a “fair, independent, impartial and politically neutral” judiciary … .”

Ulmer served on the Indiana Judicial Nominating Commission/Indiana Commission on Judicial Qualifications from 2012 to 2014. Also, he is a member of the Indiana Commission for Continuing Legal Education, the Indiana Trial Lawyers of Association, the Goshen City Bar Association and the Indiana State Bar Association.

The Indiana Trial Lawyers Association recognized Ulmer in 2016 with the Lifetime Achievement Award.

In the Legislature, Ulmer is described as casting the deciding vote on the bill to convert Indiana to daylight savings time in 2005. He also spoke out against Indiana House Bill 1419 which would have changed how judges for the Indiana Court of Appeals and the Indiana Supreme Court are selected.

South Bend attorney Robert Konopa of Tuesley Hall Konopa LLP, described Ulmer as having a “career laced with service to others” and as a “confident and sagacious advisor” to members of the judiciary.  

Ulmer graduated with honors from Michigan State University and earned his law degree in 1963 at Indiana University Maurer School of Law. He was on the board of editors for the Indiana Law Journal.  

A reception honoring Ulmer will be from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Sept. 22 at MapleCrest Country Club, 611 Hackett Road, Goshen. Guest speakers will be Sherrill Colvin of Haller & Colvin P.C. in Fort Wayne and Robb.

RSVP by Sept. 12 to Kayla DeVoy of the Indiana Bar Foundation at 317-608-6502 or kdevoy@inbj.org.


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