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Justice Judy Cates

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Firm Name
Justice - 5th District Appellate Court Illinois
N 14th St. & Main St.
Name & Address

Mt. Vernon, IL 62864

Areas of Practice
Judge - Appellate
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N 14th St, Mt Vernon, IL, USA
Full Biography

Justice Judy Cates, or “Judge Judy,” as she likes to call herself, was elected to the Illinois 5th District Appellate Court in 2012. She has served on the Court ever since. Although the courthouse is located in Mt. Vernon, IL, the Court hears cases from 37 counties in Southern Illinois. “I was elected by the people, and therefore, I will appeal to them again to send me to the State Supreme Court in November 2020,” Cates said.

About Justice Judy L. Cates

Prior to being elected as an appellate court justice, she was a practicing trial lawyer with a nationwide practice. Justice Cates represented both plaintiffs and defendants in virtually all areas of complex civil litigation. In addition, she acted as an independent mediator for parties seeking to resolve litigation throughout the ADR process. Justice Cates was also an adjunct professor at Washington University School of Law and St. Louis University School of Law.

• Education: Washington University School of Law, Juris Doctor
• Education: Cornell University, Bachelor of Arts, Government
• Based in: Swansea, Illinois
• Experience: The Cates Law Firm, LLC, 2006 - 2012
• Experience: Cates, Kurowski, Bailey & Shultz, LLC, 1982 - 2006
• Experience: Korein Tillery, 1997 - 2003
• Experience: St. Clair County Arbitration Administrator, 1999 - 2012
• Experience: U.S. Arbitration & Mediation Midwest, Inc., 1996 - 2012

For ALL the People

Throughout my legal career, I have advocated for social justice. I intend to continue that fight on behalf of all the people of Southern Illinois when I am their representative on the Supreme Court. Similarly, as a lawyer and as a judge, I have fought to protect the rights of working people, children and seniors. That includes protecting others from being taken advantage of in the civil justice system. I’ve always wanted to make a difference in the lives of the people and worked hard to always get it right. Therefore, I will continue that fight "FOR ALL THE PEOPLE" on the Supreme Court.

If the people of the 5th Judicial District in southern Illinois send me to represent them on the Illinois Supreme Court, I will continue my commitment toward fairness and impartiality. Above all, I will remain a judge that everyone can trust – a judge committed "FOR ALL THE PEOPLE."

J. L. Cates