Judge Cynthia Y. Cobbs, Chair

Cynthia Y CobbsOn August 30th, the Illinois Judicial Council hosted its 36th Annual Installation and Scholarship Awards Banquet. To the many judges, lawyers, elected officials and friends who were in attendance, on behalf of the Judicial Council Executive Committee and the entire IJC membership, I wish to express sincere gratitude. Your presence at the Banquet was a clear and reassuring sign of your regard for the Council and its contributions to the legal and judicial community, past, present and future.

I would be remiss if I did not also express appreciation to our past chair, Judge Andrea M. Buford, and the members of the 2017-18 Executive Committee. Because of your vision, the members of the Council have been enlightened professionally and remain committed to the ongoing work of the Council. Further, as a result of your steady hand at the helm, the state of the Illinois Judicial Council is sound.

As the new Council year begins, we as a body have the opportunity to build upon our past successes, while at the same time, to undertake new and impactful initiatives. It becomes the responsibility of the new administration, in the first instance, to ensure the stability of the organization, address the needs and concerns of the membership and, more importantly, to live fully up to the mission of the organization. Although a seemingly daunting task, we are not lacking in the proper resources in our pursuit. In the 36 years since its creation, the Judicial Council has seen an equal number of chairpersons, many of whom remain active among our ranks today. They have shown their commitment to the ongoing work and sustainability of the Council. Thus, as the newest chair, I will continue to seek them out for their institutional knowledge and guidance as we forge ahead in this new year.

True to the mission of the Council, we will seek to better serve our communities and to inspire our youth. I am particularly looking forward, with great anticipation, to our involvement with the Chicago Sky’s Clean Slate Initiative which has as its main purpose expungement of juvenile arrest records of qualifying youth offenders. As well, we will reprise our role in local middle and high schools to mentor and encourage our young people to achieve the highest levels of education and to pursue positive career goals.

Equally important will be our increased presence and enhanced engagement with the communities in which we live and have taken an oath to serve. As judges first, who are also members of the Council, we acknowledge and accept as part of our judicial charge the responsibility to build public trust and confidence in our courts. To do so requires us to remain visible in our communities and vigilant in our efforts to educate the community concerning judicial processes and protocols.

Having commenced this greeting with an acknowledgement of the outgoing administration, I end it with an acknowledgment of the 2018-19 Executive Committee with whom I will partner in leading the Judicial Council this year. Thank you in advance for your willingness to serve. It is my distinct honor to serve with you as we, collectively, carry out the mission of the Illinois Judicial Council.

/s/ Hon. Cynthia Y. Cobbs, Chair