A Lookback at the 2018 NACM Annual Conference

Editor’s Note: We hope you enjoy looking back at the NACM 2018 Annual Conference in Atlanta. You can find more photos of the conference on our website and on flickr. Videos of our education sessions can be watched on YouTube.

The National Association for Court Management held its 2018 Annual Conference in downtown Atlanta from July 22 to 26. The theme of this year’s conference was Mind the Gap: The Power of Active Engagement. There was no doubt that the conference would be exciting and educational.

Before the official conference even began, some attendees were already hard at work. The Board of Directors convened over the weekend and made last-minute plans for the conference. The Joint Technology Committee convened its second in-person meeting of the year, discussing a long list of white papers they have been working on, as well as projects for the next year. A reception was held for the Early Career Professionals (ECP) and for those attending a NACM conference for the first time. This brought together many experienced individuals in the court profession with many individuals who were new to court management.

Day-by-Day Educational Program Highlights

Monday, July 23

On Monday morning, the president of NACM, Vicky Carlson, officially welcomed almost a thousand attendees to another great conference. The chief justice of the Supreme Court of Georgia, the Honorable P. Harris Hines, and Cynthia Clanton, director, Georgia Administrative Office of the Courts, also gave everyone a warm welcome to the state of Georgia. They commended the association for continually working to share experience and knowledge to enhance the profession of court management.

In the opening plenary session, Janice Marturano, founder of the Institute for Mindful Leadership, led Finding the Space to Lead: A Practical Guide to Mindful Leadership. The session focused on using one’s mind to help stay focused, clear, and compassionate, especially in a world full of distractions and division. It introduced principles of mindfulness into everyday life through specific exercises that helped address real-world situations. Attendees received tips to help with their busy calendars, meetings, to-do lists, strategic planning, and interpersonal challenges in the workplace.

Tuesday, July 24

Tuesday began with NACM’s State of the Profession speech, delivered by NACM President Vicky Carlson. Vicky recapped how much courts have changed and evolved over the years and how much has been accomplished as a profession. She emphasized the importance of continuing to engage court managers and to always look forward.

Following the speech, another great plenary was given by Victoria Pratt of Rutgers Law School: Why What We Do Matters. The session provided attendees an overview and practical applications of the principles of procedural justice. Other great sessions throughout the day focused on topics such as tech-powered civic engagement, improvement of leadership through mindfulness, and online dispute resolution.

Wednesday, July 24

Wednesday’s topics included digital evidence, enhancement of court processes for domestic violence litigants, and a presentation from the New Hampshire Circuit Court on their mandatory e-filing application.

In the afternoon, several NACM committees met face-to-face, after working together over the past year through conference calls and emails. Conference attendees enjoyed the much-anticipated exhibit show. More than 100 vendors and organizations were present to network and talk about all their different products and solutions.

Thursday, July 25

The week’s momentum came to a high point Thursday as the conference wrapped up. Attendees were treated to two final plenaries before they departed. The founding faculty director for the Center for Access to Justice at Georgia State University College of Law, Lauren Lucas, spoke about how courts can work with universities to inform and improve access to justice. Chief Judge Steven Teske from Clayton County Juvenile Court introduced best practices for juvenile courts.

Social Event Takes NACM Members “Under the Sea”

What do you get when you mix ten million gallons of water; an extensive selection of food, music, and dancing; and busloads of court managers? You get the social event for the 2018 NACM Annual Conference held at the Georgia Aquarium in Atlanta.

The Georgia Aquarium is the largest in the western hemisphere. Built in 2005, the complex includes galleries such as the Cold Water Quest with beluga whales, Garibaldi damselfish, and Japanese spider crabs. The Ocean Voyager, a 6.3-million-gallon aquatic habitat with a 100-foot-long tunnel, allows explorers to stroll under sharks, rays, grouper, and many other predatory fish. The Georgia Aquarium is currently undergoing a $100 million expansion, which will include an interactive shark exhibit.

L to r: Derrick Kuhl, Janet Cornell, and Randy Short
L to r: Derrick Kuhl, Janet Cornell, and Randy Short

As guests of the aquarium, attendees could explore the fascinating displays of marine creatures while indulging in an array of culinary delights and enjoying live music performed by an incredible ensemble for a fun-filled evening of entertainment, sea-life facts, networking, and shopping in the aquarium gift shop.

Once again, the Conference Development Committee provided an outstanding social event, and a great time was had by all.

NACM Honors Member Accomplishments

Justice Achievement Award

NACM established the Justice Achievement Award to recognize courts and related organizations for meritorious projects and exemplary accomplishments that enhance the administration of justice. The Hamilton County, Ohio Municipal Court Help Center received this award for 2018. The Help Center’s mission is to increase access to justice by providing self-represented litigants with education, information, and limited legal advice to help them become better equipped to understand their legal issues and navigate the court system.

Top Court Technology Solutions Awards

NACM’s Top Court Technology Solutions Awards recognize technology solutions that advance NACM’s National Agenda, are cost-effective and of high value, utilize innovative tools to transform the delivery of court services, are collaborative solutions that involve data sharing and management, and are solutions that can be replicated in other jurisdictions.

NACM received 18 nominations. The Joint Technology Committee assembled a panel of nine judges, who reviewed and scored all submissions. The 2018 award winners are:

1st Place
Justice Partner Portal, Los Angeles Superior Court

2nd Place
Florida Courts HELP App—Florida State Courts System

3rd Place
Juvenile Access eXchange (JAX) System, Judicial Branch of Arizona in Maricopa County—Juvenile Department

Honorable Mentions
Multi-Jurisdictional Juvenile Justice Data Sharing Model Project, 20th Circuit, Ottawa County, Michigan; Statewide Electronic Warrant Project, Maricopa County, Arizona; E-Notification, Administrative Office of Courts, Arizona; Virtual Remote Interpreting, 9th Judicial Circuit, Florida; Instant Notifications for DV Survivors; Hamilton County, Ohio; Youth Center, 20th Circuit, Ottawa County, Michigan; Calendaring Online and Indigent Defense System, Travis County, Texas; and Namibia e-Justice, Office of the Judiciary, Republic of Namibia.

Outstanding Early Career Professional
The 2018 Outstanding Early Career Professional Award was presented to Emily Reed from Washoe County, Nevada. Ms. Reed’s colleagues nominated her for the award for her commitment to helping self-represented litigants successfully navigate through the complexities of the legal system; for her tireless efforts to ensure her employees receive continual support and guidance; and for her energy, wisdom, and innovation. As noted in the nomination letter, “Ms. Reed is extremely personable and has a heart for the public that we serve.”

NACM Committee Member Awards

Each year, NACM committee chairs recognize committee members for their outstanding leadership and dedication to the association through their service on NACM committees. The 2018 award recipients are:

Communications Committee—Aurora Zamora, Danielle Rosete, Giuseppe (Joe) M. Fazari, Jeffrey Tsunekawa, Rick Pierce, and Roger Rand

Core Committee—Judy Ly

Governance Committee—Angie VanSchoick and Mark Dalton

Membership Committee—Leesa McNeil, Mark Weinberg, and Michelle Oken

Vendors Address Efficiency in the Courts

Courts are evolving, and the demand to create efficient and cost-effective processes is inevitable. Remote events, electronic filing, and online pay options are all available in most courts, providing convenience to our litigants while addressing the burgeoning issue of time and facility space. More companies are offering a wide range of products and services to address the progressing needs of the courts.

On July 21, 2018, more than 49 vendors converged in the Exhibit Hall of the Hilton Atlanta. Products included jury management systems that notify potential jurors of duty via text, case management tools that simplify the filing process, and courtroom and furniture designs that accommodate ADA requests. The vendor-sponsored lunch was an opportunity to dine and network with court executives from around the globe.

Thanks to the following exhibitors who made this year’s exhibit show a success.

CSI Computing System Innovations
DLR Group
Extract Systems
Harman, a Samsung Company
Jury Systems
Liberty Recording
Matterhorn by Court Innovations
Municipal Services Bureau (MSB)
Perdue Brandon Fielder Collins & Mott, LLP
Point & Pay
Response Technologies
Slingshot Technology
Tyler Technologies

ATI Connect
Courthouse Technologies
For The Record (FTR)
Government Window
Harris & Harris
Journal Technologies
Justice Systems
Linebarger Goggan Blair & Sampson
Pioneer Technology Group
Premiere Credit North America
Thomson Reuters

NACM Annual Conference Sponsors

The National Association for Court Management acknowledges and thanks the following sponsors for their support and contributions to the 2018 annual conference.

New NACM President Paul DeLosh accepts the gavel from Immediate Past President Vicky Carlson.

New NACM Board Is Sworn In

The National Association for Court Management Board of Directors for 2018-2019 was sworn in at the annual conference in Atlanta, Georgia.

The new members of the Board of Directors are:

  • Charleston L. Carter, North Carolina’s 26th Judicial District
  • Michelle Dunivan, Maricopa County Superior Court
  • Frank Hardester, Van Buren County Courts
  • Tina Mattison, Pima County Superior Court
  • Angie VanSchoick, Town of Breckenridge

Front row: Vicky Carlson, Will Simmons, Paul DeLosh, Tracy J. BeMent, Kathy Griffin

Back row: Jeffrey Tsunekawa, Alyce Roberts, Frank Hardester, Michelle Dunivan, Charleston L. Carter, Greg Lambard, Rick Pierce, Angie VanSchoick, Tina Mattison, Julie Dybas

Thank you for your continued service to NACM.


Court Manager would like to thank the following members of the Communications Committee for contributing to this section: Dorothy Howell, Superior Court of New Jersey, Essex Vicinage; Alyce Roberts, Alaska Court System; Randy Short, Kansas City Municipal Court; and Jeffrey M. Tsunekawa, Texas Office of Court Administration.