What Does A Court Executive Do?
The Court Executive Officer (CEO) is responsible for Human Resource Management; preparing court budgets; administering accounting, purchasing, payroll, and financial control functions; and guiding the budget through state and local government review processes; Case flow Management, evaluating pending caseloads; developing and implementing systems (both automated and procedural) that support effective calendar management; Technology Management, evaluating opportunities for technologies that expand the capacity of the court system; Information Management, developing the capacity to deliver information to decision makers at critical events; Jury Management, managing the jury system in the most efficient and cost-effective way; Space Management, managing physical space to assure access to all citizens, provide adequate room for work and circulation, and instill public confidence; Intergovernmental Liaison-acting as a liaison to other governmental agencies and departments to promote collaboration, integration of systems, and facilitation of change while maintaining the integrity of the court as a separate but equal branch of government; Community Relations and Public Information, acting as a clearinghouse for the release of information to the media, and the public; collecting and publishing data on pending and completed judicial business and internal functions of the court system; Research and Advisory Services-identifying organizational problems and recommending procedural and administrative changes; Secretariat Services-acting as staff for judicial committees or organizations.
The Relationship of the Court Executive Officer (CEO) to the Bench
Judges and the CEO work in a complex environment. Within that environment, one of the most significant relationships is that between the judges and the CEO. Judges ultimately are responsible for effective administration of the court. Frequently, constitutions and statutes make this duty clear; other times, the duty is implied. In either case, effective administration takes place when the judiciary and the CEO manage the court together. Effective systems of administration provide for the participation of all judges in the development of policy and planning for the court. Through the collaborative efforts of the CEO and the presiding judge, court policy is implemented, monitored, and facilitated.
The CEO serves the dual function of increasing the amount of time a judge has for adjudication and bringing professional management knowledge and capability to the judiciary. In courts where judges lack administrative support they must divide their time between judicial and administrative functions. With mounting caseloads and increased pressure for more case dispositions, judges have little time to direct the day-to-day operations of the court system, plan for the implementation of new technologies, or integrate new procedures that can improve system performance. A court administrator can help the court develop and recommend policies and coordinated work processes that enhance system performance, while maintaining the independence of individual judges. CEOs can also help develop goals for the courts, prepare and execute budgets, recognize changes in caseload or demographics that will affect court operations and funding, manage court personnel and programs for their professional development, improve jury systems and services to the public, implement automated information systems, plan for space requirements, administrate systems for assessing and collecting fees, and establish procedures for handling information requests.
How Does Someone Become A Court Executive Officer
Personal and Professional Skill
A Court Executive Officer (CEO) is selected by a process that includes a majority vote of all the judges in a multi-judge court. In very large urban courts, a selection committee chaired by the presiding judge and representative of the entire bench can select the CEO. The position of Court Executive Officer is the most important non-judicial position in the court; therefore, each judge participates in the hiring process.
The CEOs needs to posses an ability to analyze problems, formulate recommendations, build consensus, empower people, and foster change are among the attributes of a successful administrator. A successful CEO working in a complex court environment exhibits the following:
Ideally, the CEO will combine the technical skills of a manager with knowledge of public and business administration and an understanding of the duties and the problems peculiar to the courts.
Specifically, the CEO should have completed considerable study of public and business administration or have on-the-job experience in these fields. To this end, many courts require that a court administrator hold a degree in business, public, or judicial administration or be a graduate of the Court Executive Development Program of the Institute for Court Management. In addition, the court administrator should be familiar with courts and government as well as with business organization and operations.
The Court Executive Officer should have these qualifications:
A graduate degree in judicial administration, public administration, business administration, or law with management training or experience in a court for three or more years with proven competency in administration and management.
A bachelor's degree in one of the fields named above or three years of experience in a responsible elected or appointed position, with training in court administration.