Governor Mitch Daniels announced he has selected longtime Tippecanoe County juvenile court judge Loretta Hogan Rush as the next member of the Indiana Supreme Court. Rush will replace Justice Frank E. Sullivan Jr., who retired in July.
"In studying Judge Rush's stellar legal and judicial career, hearing from a diverse multitude of her admirers, and observing her firsthand as she helped us bring reform and improvement to Indiana's child welfare system, I concluded she is the best choice among a strong set of finalists," said Daniels. "Her jurisprudential philosophy and her commitment to judicial restraint are firm and forthright. I have every confidence she'll serve Indiana with the distinction we've come to expect from our Supreme Court."
For the first 14 years of her career she was an associate, then partner, in the firm of Reiling, Teder, Withered and Rush in Lafayette. Among areas of her general practice, she focused on family law, business, corporate and probate cases.
Judge Rush, 54, of Lafayette, was elected to the bench in 1998 and has served since then in Tippecanoe Superior Court 3 in Lafayette. Her court focuses on juvenile cases, including guardianships, delinquencies, adoptions and protective order hearings. As the chair of the Indiana Juvenile Justice Improvement Committee, she has been closely involved with statutory and regulatory efforts to bring better and standardized child welfare practices to Indiana.
Rush's reach goes well beyond her courtroom. For example, following the abuse or neglect deaths of several children in her community in the early 2000s, Rush decided to spearhead efforts to develop solutions. She approached local organizations to create a series of public forums to educate citizens about the critical issues of child welfare and available services and to form plans moving forward. Following standing room only public sessions, volunteer efforts began that continue today to improve the lives of children in the Lafayette area.
"I am honored to serve the people of our great state as the 108th Justice of the Indiana Supreme Court," said Rush. "I intend to work with the other four justices to build on our Supreme Court's record of excellence, integrity and respect for the law."
The other finalists selected by the Judicial Nominating Commission were Judge Steven R. Nation, Hamilton County Superior Court, and Geoffrey G. Slaughter, an Indianapolis attorney.
Rush also has been involved in many diverse efforts to improve the justice system, including serving as chair of the Indiana Court Improvement Program Executive Committee, representing Indiana three times at the National Judicial Leadership Summit on the Protection of Children, and serving on the Indiana Supreme Court Judicial Technology and Automation Committee. Her court is one of three selected to participate in the Indiana Supreme Court Reporting Pilot Project. Rush also is the president of the Indiana Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges, a group of 113 Indiana judges and magistrates who have juvenile and family law jurisdiction.
Rush has volunteered as a judge for the Indiana University, Maurer School of Law moot court competition, speaks to local school children about the court system, and assists with programs that deal with issues such as bullying, social isolation, teen violence and discrimination.
Rush earned her undergraduate degree from Purdue University and her law degree from the Indiana University, Maurer School of Law in Bloomington.
She and her husband, Jim Rush, are the parents of four children who range in age from 10 to 25.
A date for Rush's robing ceremony will be determined by the Supreme Court.
A photo and more information about the new Supreme Court justice may be found at this link: http://www.in.gov/judiciary/jud-qual/3001.htm
Audio of the program may be accessed here: http://www.in.gov/gov/files/Audio/091412INSupremeCourtAppointment.mp3