Report: The 2012 Judicial Performance Commission

The 2012 Judicial Performance Commission of Cook County (JPC or Commission) has completed its evaluations of the Circuit Court and Appellate Court Judges whose terms expire this year. The Report is available here as a .pdf download.

Each judge’s report consists of a professional biography (compiled from Sullivan’s Judicial Profiles and questionnaires completed by the judges) and a narrative describing the strengths and weaknesses of the judge’s performance on the bench as identified in our research. For judges with difficulties on the bench, the Commission’s report includes a judicial performance improvement plan which recommends actions such as peer mentoring, court watching, anger management courses, and continuing education. For judges demonstrating substantial difficulties on the bench, the Commission’s report includes a judicial performance improvement plan, and indicates that significant difficulties on the bench may impede his or her effectiveness as a jurist.

The reports issued by the JPC do not recommend or not recommend judges for retention. Rather, the JPC was established to conduct and utilize research-based judicial evaluations to provide constructive feedback about judicial performance to the judges being evaluated, their supervising judges, and the Chief Judge of the Circuit Court of Cook County. The reports of the JPC are available to the legal community and to the public-at-large. The goal of the JPC is to use judicial evaluations as a tool in an effort to improve the quality of the Cook County judiciary and to identify those judges who are recognized as good jurists.

We’d like to thank the members of the Commission for their time and the work they put into the project. We’d also like to thank the Clerk of the Court for their assistance in data-collection, members of Cook County’s legal community for their participation in surveys and interviews, and the judiciary for their participation in the project.

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