Arkansas Judicial Council

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Arkansas Judicial Council Photo

Judicial Council, fall 2015 meeting:

Seated: (l to r) Hon. Gary Arnold (Immediate Past President), Hon. Rita Gruber (Director)

Standing: (l to r) Hon. Robert Edwards; Hon. David McCormick (Director); Hon. David Clark; Hon. Earnest Brown, Jr.; Hon. Barbara Halsey (Director); AOC Director J.D. Gingerich (Secretary/Treasurer); Hon. Mary McGowan (President 2015-2016); Hon. Mike Medlock (Director); Hon. James Cox (Director)

Information about Arkansas Judicial Council

Arkansas Judicial Council consists of all judges of the state circuit courts, judges of the Arkansas Court of Appeals, justices of the Arkansas Supreme Court, retired justices and judges of those courts, and the Director of the Arkansas Administrative Office of the Courts.  The Council acts as the official body representing the state's judiciary.

The Council was organized "to foster and preserve the integrity, dignity, and independence of the judiciary; to promote uniformity and dispatch in judicial administration; to develop, implement and maintain a program of judicial education preassisting members newly elected or appointed to the bench; to provide continuing legal education for members accommodating the diverse needs of chancellors, circuit judges and appellate justices; and to select member to the Judicial Retirement board."

The Council has statutory responsibilities which include making recommendations to the General Assembly on judicial redistricting and the addition of new judgeships in the state; and appointment of the five members of the Board of Trustees of the Arkansas Judicial Retirement System. Ark. Code Ann. section 16-10-501 ("Development of criteria for new judgeships or redistricting"); Ark. Code Ann. section 24-8-203 ("Board of Trustees of the Arkansas Judicial Retirement System"). Formal business of the Council is conducted in spring and fall meetings each year.


2015-2016 Officers
Officer Name Phone Fax
Hon.  Mary McGowan President
Circuit Judge
401 W. Markham, Room 240
Little Rock AR 72201
501-340-5602 501-340-5640
Hon. Gary Arnold, Immediate
Circuit Judge
200 North Main Street
Benton AR 72015
501-303-5664 501-303-5695
Hon. David Guthrie, President-Elect
Circuit Judge
101 North Washington, Suite 205
El Dorado AR 71730
870-864-1968 870-864-1969
Mr. J.D. Gingerich, Secretary/Treasurer
Director, Administrative Office of the Courts
625 Marshall Street, Justice Building
Little Rock AR 72201
501-682-9400 501-682-9410


2015-2016 Board of Directors
Name Phone Fax Term Exp.

Hon. David McCormick
Circuit Judge
108 Union Street, Room 108
Dardanelle AR 72834

479-229-3580 479-229-1095 October 2016
Hon. Rita Gruber
Court of Appeals
625 Marshall Street
Little Rock AR 72201
501-682-7874 501-682-7494 October 2016
Hon. James Cox
Circuit Judge
901 South "B" Street
Fort Smith AR 72901
479-782-3035 479-784-1537 October 2016
Hon. Herbert Wright
Circuit Judge
401 W. Markham Street, Room 440
Little Rock AR 72201
501-831-4670 501-340-8822 October 2017
Hon. Barbara Halsey
Circuit Judge
320 W. Court Street, Room 210
Paragould AR 72450
870-926-9503 870-239-4185 October 2017
Hon. Mike Medlock
Circuit Judge
220 South 4th Street
Van Buren AR 72956
479-471-3290 479-471-3292 October 2017

Hon. Carlton Jones
Circuit Judge
400 Laurel Street
Texarkana AR 71854

870-774-2421 870-772-4680 October 2018

Hon. Joanna Taylor
Circuit Judge
123 North College
Fayetteville AR 72701

479-444-1682 479-444-1686 October 2018

Hon. Leon Johnson
Circuit Judge
401 W. Markham Street, Room 420
Little Rock AR 72201

501-340-8590 501-340-6039 October 2018