9 finalists named for Marion Superior Court vacancies

A pool of 41 applicants to fill upcoming vacancies on the Marion Superior Court has been winnowed down to nine finalists, whose names will now go to the governor for his selection.

The Marion County Judicial Selection Committee announced Wednesday it had named three finalists each to fill three upcoming vacancies created by the impending retirements of Judges Barbara Cook Crawford, David Dreyer and Marilyn Moores. The finalists include:

  • For Judge Crawford’s seat, Marion Superior Criminal Division 1: Magistrate Judge Marshelle Dawkins Broadwell, Magistrate Judge Amber Collins-Gebrehiwet and Terrance Tharpe.
  • For Judge Dreyer’s seat, Marion Superior Civil Division 10: Magistrate Judge Ryan Gardner, Magistrate Judge Danielle Gaughan and Magistrate Judge Jeffrey Marchal.
  • For Judge Moores’ seat, Marion Superior Juvenile Division: Magistrate Judge Geoffrey Gaither, Magistrate Judge Jason Reyome and Commissioner Jennifer Springer.

The committee — led by Indiana Supreme Court Justice Mark Massa and Indiana Court of Appeals Chief Judge Cale Bradford — interviewed the 41 applicants on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. By law, the committee is tasked with naming three finalists per vacancy, then submitting those names to the governor for final selection.

In 2018, Republican Gov. Eric Holcomb named three jurists to the Marion Superior Court bench through Marion County’s first merit-based selection process.

Holcomb so far has made 46 judicial appointments, a fact he announced Tuesday when naming Leanna Weissmann as the newest judge of the Indiana Court of Appeals.  The governor makes judicial appointments to the state’s appellate courts, to superior courts in counties using merit-based selection and in Indiana trial courts where a vacancy occurs before an election.

The 14-member selection committee is also tasked with deciding whether to recommend Marion Superior Court judges for retention. It unanimously voted in 2018 and 2020 to recommend retention for all judges seeking to keep their seats.

To fill the upcoming vacancies on the Superior Court bench, the committee must now submit a letter detailing the qualifications of each of the nine finalists to the governor’s office. Once the list is received, Holcomb will have 60 days to make his final selections.

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