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Hon. Lisa Holder White becomes 1st African-American to sit on 4th District Appellate Court

Illinois Supreme Court Justice Rita B. Garman will administer the judicial oath of office to Circuit Judge Lisa Holder White, this time as an Appellate Court justice, during her swearing-in ceremony starting at 9:30 a.m. on Monday, January 14 in the Ceremonial Courtroom of the Supreme Court Building.

"Just over four years ago, I had the privilege of swearing in Lisa Holder White as a circuit judge in the Sixth Judicial Circuit," Justice Garman said. "Since that time, she has earned the respect and admiration of her colleagues on the bench and of the attorneys who appear before her. More importantly, she has earned the respect of the community she serves.

"I am pleased that she will be joining the Fourth District Appellate Court, where I am sure that she will continue to serve as an outstanding jurist and a dedicated public servant."

In becoming the first African American to sit on the Appellate Court in the Fourth District, Lisa Holder White's long-held dream as a 12-year-old to become an attorney has developed into much more than what she had originally envisioned as that little girl.

"Becoming an attorney was a lifelong dream of mine that I was able to accomplish," Judge White said. "Serving as an Associate and Circuit judge in the Sixth Circuit was more than a dream realized and has been an amazing experience.

"I will miss the people I see on a daily basis over here at the courthouse. At the appellate court level it is more about reading the record.
"I have always enjoyed research and writing, and as an Appellate Court justice I will have more of an opportunity to engage in this kind of work. I thank Justice Garman and the Illinois Supreme Court for this opportunity."

Judge White graduated magna cum laude from Lewis University in 1990 with a B.A. degree in political science. She received her juris doctor degree from the University of Illinois College of Law in 1993.

Upon graduation from law school, Judge White served as an assistant state's attorney for Macon County. While there, she handled various matters ranging from traffic to criminal felony cases. Subsequently, Judge White served as an assistant public defender litigating on behalf of those charged with criminal offenses and representing abused and neglected juveniles.

Before her appointment to the bench, Judge White was in private practice at the Decatur law firm formerly known as Brinkoetter & White. While there, she was engaged in the practice of family and criminal law.

In 2001, Judge White was sworn in as an Associate Judge in the Sixth Judicial Circuit. She was appointed by the Supreme Court as a Circuit Judge in 2008 and was elected to the position in November 2010.

Judge White has presided over various matters ranging from small claims disputes to felonies. She currently serves as the Supervising Judge of the Criminal Law Division.

Judge White is a member of the Illinois Judicial Conference, and serves as chair of the Illinois Judicial Conference Committee on Education. She is also an instructor for “New Judge School” for all new judges in Illinois. In addition, Judge White teaches at the biennial Education Confer-ence, a continuing education conference for state court judges.

Judge White is a member of the Decatur Bar Association and the Illinois Judges Association. She previously served on the boards of the Decatur Public Schools Foundation and the Mid-Illinois Chapter of the American Red Cross. She currently serves on the boards of the Community Foundation of Macon County and Millikin University.

Judge White was assigned by the Supreme Court to fill the vacancy created by the death of the Hon. John McCullough. The assignment is effective January 14 and will terminate December 1, 2014 when the position is filled by the 2014 General Election.

The Fourth District is composed of 30 central Illinois counties spanning from Iowa to Indiana. Those counties are: Adams, Brown, Calhoun, Cass, Champaign, Clark, Coles, Cumberland, DeWitt, Douglas, Edgar, Ford, Greene, Jersey, Livingston, Logan, Macon, Macoupin, Mason, McLean, Menard, Morgan, Moultrie, Piatt, Pike, Sangamon, Schuyler, Scott, Vermilion and Woodford.

Posted on January 10, 2013 by Chris Bonjean