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Details | State of Illinois Office of the Illinois Courts

Justice Lisa Holder White announces formation of screening committee to fill Resident Circuit Judge – Peoria County vacancy


Public invited to submit comments on applicants.

Justice Lisa Holder White of the Supreme Court of Illinois has announced the formation of a judicial screening committee for the Tenth Judicial Circuit – Peoria County.

The screening committee was formed for the purpose of assessing the qualifications of those who have applied for appointment to the office of Resident Circuit Judge for the Tenth Judicial Circuit. The retirement of Judge John P. Vespa, effective July 31, 2024, created the vacancy. Under the Illinois Constitution, the vacancy will be filled by Supreme Court appointment.

After the committee has received public input, gathered information, and interviewed each of the applicants, it will report its findings to the Supreme Court of Illinois. The person appointed will serve until the general election to be held in November 2026.

The screening committee consists of non-lawyers and lawyers who reside in the Tenth Judicial Circuit. The non-lawyer members of the committee are Frank Abdnour, Jim Montelongo, Diane Cullinan Oberhelman, and Jeanne Williamson. The lawyer members of the committee are Judge Jerelyn Maher (ret.), Attorney Rex Linder, and Attorney Vincent Cail.

Judge Maher (ret.) will serve as chairperson of the committee.

Applicants being considered for appointment to the judgeship are William W.P. Atkins, Timothy Cusack, Jason Ramos, and Dale Thomas.

Members of the public are invited to submit written comments concerning the applicants by U.S. mail to: Tenth Judicial Screening Committee, Peoria County Courthouse, 324 Main Street, Room 215, Peoria, IL 61602-1363 or by email to Comments must be in writing and received no later than 5 p.m. on July 9, 2024. Anonymous letters will not be accepted. All comments will be held in the strictest confidence by the committee and the court.