Chief Judge Holderman recently gave the Northern District’s annual state of the court address.  The address led with a moment of silence for the late Judge Hibbler.  Pronouncing the state of the Court “good,” Holderman addressed existing vacancies on the bench:

  • There were five vacancies on the bench but two are being filled by new Judges Lee and Tharp, confirmed in May.
  • Magistrate Judges Nolan and Denlow are retiring, both effective October 1, 2012.  The Court is reviewing applications to fill those upcoming vacancies.

The Court is also getting busier:

  • Civil case filings increased 8.2% in 2011 to 9,652 cases.
  • Civil jury trials increased 51% to 127 in 2011.  From 2009 to 2011, civil jury trials increased 160%.
  • The N.D. Illinois remains in the top 10% of districts in efficiency of resolving civil cases, with a median disposition time of 6.6 months.

The Court Clerk is investigating ways to make the Court’s website even more useful  And the Court continues its participation in two pilot programs:

  1. Cameras in the Courtroom; and
  2. Patent Pilot Program.

Finally, the Court’s judges currently preside over more than 60 multi-district litigation cases.