LINCOLN – Nebraska Court of Appeals Judge, John F. Irwin, has announced his intention to retire on November 1, 2016.
In his letter of retirement to the Governor, Irwin noted, “I have enjoyed my 24 years on the court immensely and have had great satisfaction in taking on the challenges given to me as one of the original members of the Court of Appeals.”
Irwin was appointed in 1991 by then-Governor Ben Nelson when the Court of Appeals was first formed. He served as Chief Judge of the court from 1998-2004.
According to Chief Court of Appeals Judge Frankie Moore, “As a member of the Court of Appeals since its inception, Judge Irwin has been instrumental in establishing a court culture aimed at serving the citizens of our state through the timely rendering of well-reasoned decisions. He has worked tirelessly to improve our court processes to make the appellate system of justice both efficient and transparent for the parties and public.”
Prior to his service on the court Irwin served as a Deputy Sarpy County Attorney, Chief Criminal Sarpy County Attorney, and spent five years in the private practice of law.
Irwin has written several hundred court opinions during his tenure and contributed as a panel member to even more decisions. In addition to his court caseload, he has devoted substantial time to the general improvement of the judiciary and access to justice through his teaching, writings, and committee membership. “Judge Irwin has served the Nebraska judiciary in a truly exemplary fashion throughout his career,” said Judge Moore.
Irwin’s judicial service highlights include Co-Chairing the Nebraska State Bar Association and Nebraska Supreme Court Minority Justice Committee. As a dedicated educator, Irwin has spoken at Nebraska State Bar Association conferences and seminars and served as a leader of the Judicial Branch Education Committee. Nationally, he has been active in the National Council of Chief Judges, and was president of the Council in 2004. Judge Irwin also served as the National Chair of the 2012 Annual Conference of the National Consortium on Racial and Ethnic Fairness in the Courts. Judge Irwin has written and presented on judicial ethics, judicial selection, and implicit bias.
According to Irwin, he looks forward to a rewarding “Third Chapter” of life called retirement, including spending time with his two young grandchildren. “The Court of Appeals will greatly miss Judge Irwin’s experience, intellect, and energy which he has devoted to the court over these past 24 years” said Moore.
The first step in replacing Judge Irwin will be for the Judicial Nominating Commission to announce the deadline for submission of judicial applications.
Resources Commission information: https://supremecourt.nebraska.gov/2588/court-appeals-fourth-district