It is an exciting time for our Illinois Supreme Court as Chief Justice Anne Burke completes her term and soon thereafter will retire after a distinguished career on the bench, Justice Mary Jane Theis becomes our new Chief Justice next week, and Justice Joy Cunningham will soon become the newest member of the Supreme Court.
We thank Chief Justice Burke for her exemplary leadership in so ably and steadily steering the court system through the sudden and epic jolt of the pandemic shortly after she became Chief. Chief Justice Burke not only steered the court system through the challenges of the pandemic, but she also embraced the opportunities it provided to modernize the system and set the Illinois courts on the path toward a fairer and better justice system for the future.
As Director of the Administrative Courts Marcia Meis so aptly put it in the title of her recent post, Justice Burke had a Chief Justice Term Like No Other. And that was just the culmination of an impactful legal career after earlier in her life playing a lead role in the creation of the Special Olympics. She has been a champion for access to justice and making our community a better place for everyone throughout her career, and we congratulate and thank her and wish her well in her next act!
As Chief Justice Burke completes her term, we are excited to welcome another great jurist and a true champion for access to justice as our next Chief Justice: Justice Mary Jane Theis.
Justice Theis has led by example to make the courts more fair and accessible for all Illinoisans throughout her tenure on the bench. Using a collaborative leadership style, she also has a distinguished track record of helping our court system, our judiciary, and our profession improve and adapt to changing times. We look forward to continuing to work with her as Chief Justice!
Lastly, we congratulate Justice Joy Cunningham for her ascension to the Supreme Court. A former President of the CBA and board member for the CBF, she too has long been a fine jurist and a great advocate for access to justice and will be a great addition to the Court.
We thank all the Justices for their ongoing leadership and commitment to making our courts fair and accessible for everyone in Illinois.