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Posted on: December 9, 2020

Judge Katherine S. Gorman Named First Woman Chief Judge of the Tenth Circuit

The Tenth Judicial Circuit is pleased to announce that on December 9th, Circuit Judge Katherine S. Gorman was elected by her circuit judge peers to serve as the first woman Chief Judge of the Tenth Judicial Circuit. Her two-year term will begin January 4, 2021. Judge Gorman was first selected as an associate judge of the Tenth Circuit on November 1, 2007, and then was elected as a circuit judge in a circuit wide election in 2012. She was retained to serve another 6-year term as circuit judge by the same voters in 2018, receiving 86% of the vote. She is presently the Presiding Judge in Tazewell County, sitting in its felony courtroom.

In addition to being the first female Chief Judge in the history of the Tenth Circuit, Judge Gorman also has the distinction of being the first child of a former chief judge to serve in the same role. Her father, the Hon. John A. Gorman (Ret.), honorably served the judiciary from 1979 to 2014 in the capacities of Circuit Judge, Appellate Court justice, and Federal Court Magistrate. He was Chief Judge of the Tenth Circuit from 1994 to 1998.

"I am honored and humbled to have the support of my colleagues and have big shoes to fill. 2020 has been a year filled with challenges and I am ready to get to work for a smooth transition and look forward to a productive 2021," said Judge Gorman. "l can't wait to tell my dad."

Outgoing Chief Judge Paul Gilfillan said Judge Gorman is of the exact temperament, legal ability and management skills needed for the 10th circuit. 

"Judge Gorman places the good of the circuit above her own interests and will be an excellent manager of the five-county circuit, responsible for the overall operation of the judicial system in the circuit. It is good news for those justice partners, within and outside the courthouses, and members of the local bar associations that practice in the Tenth," Gilfillan said.

A chief judge's duties include administrative work, scheduling of dockets, assignment of judges, and oversight of court personnel. All 24 chief judges in the State of Illinois belong to the conference of chief judges, which meet frequently, and whose mission is to provide continuous and stable statewide policy development and practices concerning the needs of the court system, under the guidance of the Illinois Supreme Court.

The Tenth Circuit consists of Peoria, Tazewell, Marshall, Putnam, and Stark Counties.

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