As the former chief judge of the Third Judicial Circuit, I am writing to express my grave concern over the recent campaign urging voters not to retain all four circuit judges running for re-election.
It is absolutely unprecedented to call for the ouster of all incumbent judges in an election regardless of their qualifications and individual merits.
I have worked with all four of the judges: Chief Judge Ann Callis, Judge David Hylla, Judge John Knight and Judge Barb Crowder. All four are highly rated in the Illinois State Bar Association Judicial Advisory Poll for their legal ability, temperament, integrity and qualifications.
In addition, all four have made a measurable impact on our local court systems.
Under Callis the Third Circuit has instituted a series of important reforms and created a number of innovative programs, including their home foreclosure mediation program that is helping families keep their homes.
Hylla chaired the task force that created the medical malpractice mediation program, which is reducing the impact of lawsuits on doctors and injured patients alike.
Knight is a former state's attorney and a veteran who served on the committee that created the special beterans court, which is helping troubled veterans get their lives back on track.
Crowder has done an exceptional job creating special programs for women and children who are victims of abuse.
I would urge people to vote yes to retain four excellent judges who are doing an excellent job for us.
Edward C. Ferguson