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					                 AOC                                                                                   November 2011




                                 On Balance
From the Director                                              AOC Chief Information Officer
                        The past three months have passed      on National Technology Panel
                        quickly and the AOC has been


                                                               J
                                                                     orge Basto, AOC CIO, didn’t just go to the 2011
                        hard at work with a variety of
                                                                     Court Technology Conference for the swag at the
                        projects we are excited to report to
                                                                     vendor tables. As a
                        you.
                                                               board member of the Court
                           The agency-wide scanning            IT Officers Consortium
                        effort that began earlier this year    (CITOC), he was put to
                        has paid off immeasurably. So          work moderating the panel
Marla S. Moore
                        many files have been digitized that    Great Expectations:
20 filing cabinets were put into surplus. Herschel Jones       Manage Them Before They Manage You on Tuesday,
Middle School in Dallas, GA, was the recipient of the          October 4, 2011.
many three-ring binders that were left without anything             The 4:00 p.m. session was well-attended as Basto
to bind during the scanning process.                           guided Court Technology Officers Jennetta Vinoy, Napa
     In this issue, the AOC Department Spotlight is            County (CA) Superior Courts, Heather Pettit,
                                                                                      Sacramento (CA) Superior Court,
focused on our IT Division.
                                                                                      and Joe Mannion, Alaska Court
     Our staff is gearing up for the upcoming legislative
                                                                                      System, through the free-flowing,
session. The Board of Court Reporting recently held
                                                                                      conversational panel which includ-
three Town Hall meetings and is busy planning more.                                   ed topics like “Getting Buy-In
On top of their regular duties, AOC staff participated in                             from the Bench”, motivating
a Work Study for two weeks to better understand the                                   employees, and the appropriate
questions put to our office on a day-to-day basis. In the                              tools and processes to use for
near future, several of our publications — Georgia             Jorge Basto             effective project management.
Courts Journal and On Balance — will be available in                                   “The CIO/CTO position is intend-
digital web-site versions.                                     ed to be a forward thinking, strategic and visionary
     The dust has settled from our “great migration” and       role,” Basto said, “but the reality is that there is constant
what once was a cluttered mess is now wide open and            pressure to juggle new projects with current infrastruc-
                                                               ture needs which forces Project Management method-
easily navigable. A newly constructed door directs the
                                                               ologies to be implemented.”
flow of traffic straight through one building to the next
                                                                    The consensus of the panel was that with good buy-
without the inconvenience of wandering through a maze
                                                               in from the appropriate leadership, marketing and sup-
in search of the agency training room or an exit.              port becomes much more viable. “Buy-in” from the
Cubicles were dismantled/reconfigured while bookcases          staff is essential as well. Managing, encouraging, and
and unused countertops were removed. Surplus comput-           motivating staff is imperative, the panel concluded, to
ers were donated to Computers for Youth-Atlanta, a             retain good employees despite a competitive private
group that supplies 6th graders with home computers            sector.
stocked with educational games and software.                        Read more on CTC2011 on page 2.
     CTC 2011: Recharging Court Technology on a Shoestring Budget
     Submitted by Michael Neuren




                          T
                                     he month of October             On Wednesday,
                                     brought around the        (October 5) Miami-
                                     biennial Court            Dade County Judge
                             Technology Conference or CTC      Steven Leifman told
                             2011, presented by the National   the personal and
                             Center for State Courts. Before   compelling story of his effort to reform his court's
                             you go thinking that this was     revolving-door administration of justice by partnering
     Michael Neuren          just another West Coast junket    on change with prisons, mental health service
                             for a few members of the IT       providers, courts, prosecuting attorneys, and ultimate-
     staff, you should think of it as a recharge to invigor-   ly the state legislature. Judge Leifman’s concern that
     ate our folks and an opportunity to see how Georgia       he was unable to really do anything for the mentally
     compares with other states’ judicial systems. While       ill in his court drove him to find a solution to this
     conferences and conventions may mean fun and frolic       national problem. He described cases involving the
     for some, these events were chock full of important       mentally ill charged with crimes who could be sen-
     activities and education …, they were also huge busi-     tenced to jail but could not be involuntarily hospital-
     ness and marketing opportunities.                         ized by the court. He used technology to gather data
          The Court Information Technology Officer             and to create diversion programs in partnership with
     Consortium (CITOC) created an entire track of ses-        other entities affected.
     sions for court CIO's that addresses the entire life-
     cycle of court IT management. There were many ses-        The Cloud and E-Everything
     sions sharing innovations in court automation, how             New Horizons: Cloud Computing defined “the
     courts have transitioned to new technology, and re-       cloud” and discussed the benefits and risks of cloud
     engineered processes and their organization to take       computing. There is no way to avoid the cloud as it is
     advantage of the new electronic world. Additionally,      the “new normal.” The benefits include utilizing a
     many sessions focused on looking toward the future        highly effective tool that does not require excessive
     with next-generation technology standards, new            amounts of one’s budget. Some considerations that
     information sharing approaches, and the application       must be made before going to the cloud are perform-
     of new technologies in the courtroom. Also CTC has        ance, safety, and access. Timely access, response
     the largest court technology vendor show in the world     time, and pricing all have an effect on performance.
     with all the latest systems and ideas.                    Safety concerns are loss of data and backup abilities,
                                                               corruption and hacking, location of the data (i.e., are
     Keynotes                                                  there laws that require it be in the state or country?),
         On Tuesday (October 4), the keynote speaker was       and access to data when a contract ends. Some of the
     New York Times technology columnist David Pogue           questions they posed include:
     who demonstrated the latest consumer technologies
                                                                 Will the provider expect to share the data?
     and discussed how they will change —and have
                                                                 Who controls the discarded data?
     already changed — our culture. Pogue spoke of cul-
                                                                 Could third party management of data lead to the
     tural shifts resulting from technology in terms of
                                                                  data being subpoenaed?
     app/smart phones, web2.0. and the huge generational
     changes we see now.                                                                               continued page 3


2   On Balance
                                                                                                         On Balance    3

     Iveta Toplova, Architect, Microsoft and a mem-         systems for delivery of court video and audio record-
ber of the IJIS Institute Technical Advisory                ings, e-signing, court blogging, and courtroom securi-
Committee, stressed that standards for the cloud are        ty.
critical for security, portability, and interoperability.
     With the cloud, IT staff can shift focus from          The Effect New Technology Will Have on Old Jobs
physical maintenance to business services. In the pro-           Overall, the programs had a common thread. The
gram, Transitioning from an IT Shop to a Technology         same question was asked: What effect will the intro-
Services Shop, the panel spoke of the trials and tribu-     duction of new technology have on existing court
lations of the IT department. They spoke of the prob-       departments? What will happen to employees in the
lem of being considered the place for the answers on        clerk’s office when there is no more paper to process?
the workings of anything with a cord or wire. The           What will IT do when everything moves to the
importance of establishing                                                       cloud? E-filing will not eliminate
policies and procedures to                                                       the need for the clerk’s office or
define the scope of IT was                                                       the move to the cloud will not
stressed. They discussed strate-                                                 eliminate the need for IT. The
gic planning, core competen-                                                     function of the clerk’s office and
cies, quality, and customer                                                      IT are not changing but the how
service.                                                                         and what of those departments is.
     In E-Everything: The                                                        Clerks will still manage filing but
Future of Court Business and                                                     through an e-filing system. One
Management, Tom Clarke of                                                        speaker suggested that the clerk
NCSC presented his vision of                                                     of the future may require more
the future and two directors of court administration        skills than before. The programs on the cloud and IT
offices, Artie Pepin of New Mexico and Donald               suggested that IT would have fewer physical “boxes”
Goodnow of New Hampshire, commented in a panel              to maintain and would be able to concentrate on serv-
discussion. Fewer staff with a higher skill level will      ice. Using technology to reduce costs through efiling
be required as routine tasks become automated. They         and case management may be the key in the ability of
spoke of concerns for self represented litigants, out-      courts to do more with less as the current state of the
sourcing, remote workers in the courts, and judges          economy is insisting.
specializing on certain types of cases. On concern               The Court Technology Conference (CTC), estab-
that was voiced is that accessing the courts online         lished in 1984 and sponsored by the National Center
involves removing personal contact and the impres-          for State Courts, is the largest conference dedicated to
sion of the court as trusted institution.                   court technology in the world. Every other year, CTC
     On the last day of the conference, the program,        brings together more than 1,500 court professionals
Court Technology on a Tight Budget, was held in the         — judges, court administrators, court managers, tech-
Center for Legal Court Technology (CLCT), formerly          nologists, and others — for three days of professional
Courtroom 21, courtroom. A technologically                  development, educational programs, and networking.
equipped courtroom was on the stage while Martin E.              Attending the Court Technology Conference is
Gruen, Deputy Director of CLCT, provided advice on          recommended to all those involved in the workings of
meeting the constant demand for new technology on           the courts and learning more about court functions.
a limited budget.                                           CTC2013 will be held in Baltimore, September 17 –
     At the CTC 2011 Expo, there were vendors for           19, and Georgia should be well represented there by a
case management, efiling, jury summons mailing,             great delegation.
    AOC Department Spotlight:
    Information Technology Division
    The Information Technology Division maintains the internal network of the AOC, the judicial
    branch personnel database, and external and internal websites. They also manage desktop soft-
    ware and equipment, e-mail, and listserv capabilities. The staff consults, develops, and supports
    court automation projects such as: the Child Support E-filing System, the AOC Judicial
    Information and Data Portal, local case management and docketing systems for 274 Georgia
    courts, and EXPRESS for e-citation solutions. The Division also has staff actively participating
    in local and national groups such as Oasis, CITOC, and Legal XML to define, design, and pro-
    mote judicial technology standards.


     Jorge Basto
     Chief Information Officer
                         Job Function: I manage the
                         Information Technology            Byron Branch
                         Division and balance the          Chief Technologist
                         workloads amongst available
                                                                                  Job Function: I handle or
                         resources. I evaluate project
                                                                                  assign JIRA tickets, attend
                         and enhancement requests
                                                                                  staff/budget meetings, and
                         made of IT as well as attempt
                                                                                  meet with vendors and con-
                         to define and maintain an
                                                                                  tractors most of the day. Once
                         overall strategic direction. My
                                                                                  a month, I conduct training
    day mostly consists of portfolio/project manage-
                                                                                  classes for staff, judges, or
    ment
                                                                                  clerks as requested on
    Most Valuable Job Skill: Communication with                                   Microsoft Office, online
    customers and staff as well as being able to under-    research, security, etc.
    stand the impact of IT on the business processes.
                                                           What is a highlight of your work/project over
    Favorite Hobby: Sports – I spend most of my free       the past year? Electronic warrant request informa-
    time with my daughters on the soccer fields, and I     tion sent from law enforcement to judges.
    personally play baseball and soccer on a regular
                                                           AOC Experience: Seven years, ten months, three
    basis.
                                                           days, six hours, ten minutes. (Editor’s note: This
    If you could meet one person, who would it be          was current at the time of publication.)
    and why? The late Steve Jobs – I think we all have
                                                           Favorite Holiday: Easter – I get to hide eggs in the
    visions of what “could be,” and I would love to talk
                                                           office the next day.
    to him about how you maintain the momentum and
    enthusiasm for creating solutions.




4   On Balance
                                                                                                     On Balance   5


Ann Batchan
Administrative Assistant
                                                          Kriste Pope
                                                          Software Support Manager
                       Job Function: I supply
                                                                               Job Function: I provide first
                       administrative support to the
                                                                               level support for courts that
                       IT division; set up and coordi-
                                                                               use software provided by the
                       nate meetings and confer-
                                                                               AOC (SUSTAIN, MCIS,
                       ences; maintain an office cal-
                                                                               PCIS, TIPS).
                       endar to coordinate work flow
                       and meetings; prepare                                   Best Part of Your Job?
                       responses to correspondence                             Training: one-on-one and in
                       containing routine inquires;                            the classroom)
interact with visitors, clients, and vendors; and per-
form other duties as assigned by the CIO.                Favorite Holiday? 4th of July

AOC Experience: Twenty-three and a half years            What is a highlight of your work/project over
and have had the pleasure of working under the           the past year? Configuration updates to software,
leadership of four outstanding directors and two         report updates, and CS e-filing training (child sup-
interim directors.                                       port office and SUSTAIN courts)

Best Part of Your Job: The AOC is a valuable and
necessary agency for the people of the State of
Georgia. A friendly greeting and assistance to a
frustrated caller who has been transferred ten times
                                                         Tim Dalton
and assisting a fellow employee are among the            System Administrator
favorite parts of my job.
                                                                              Job Function: I am responsi-
Fun Fact: I was an African Princess in NY                                     ble for IT infrastructure
World’s fair in 19....                                                        (servers, network, storage,
                                                                              backups, antivirus, email,
                                                                              monitoring, etc.)
Ayshwarya Sridharan                                                            Most Valuable Job Skill: I
Application Developer                                                          would have to split it between
                      Job Function: Develop and                                two - technology is the most
                      maintain applications based on                           important for the job descrip-
                      requests from Support group.       tion, but customer service would be a close second,
                                                         as an IT professional bridging the gap between
                      Most Valuable Job Skill:           technology and people is very valuable.
                      Multi-tasking and working
                      effectively based on priorities.   Favorite Hobby: Playing music. I play guitar, bass
                                                         and sax.
                      Where did you grow up:
                      City called Madras – south of      Favorite Holiday: Halloween, the only holiday
India.                                                   when it is ok to scare children who come to your
                                                         front door. I understand that this is frowned upon
Favorite Holiday: Diwali (An Asian-Indian culture        on other holidays.
festival) & Christmas – Lights being the reason for
both!
    AOC Department Spotlight: IT continued
    Michael Neuren                                          Wanda Paul
    Senior Systems Analyst/Programs Manager                 Software Support Specialist
                          Job Function: I serve as the                           Job Function: Assisting the
                          utility player on the technolo-                        Superior, State, Magistrate,
                          gy staff, handling unusual user                        Probate, and Municipal Courts
                          issues, network questions, pol-                        with accounting issues, cus-
                          icy and “big picture” systems                          tomized reports, training court
                          operations. I research solu-                           staff on all of our products;
                          tions to unique problems. I                            Sustain, MCIS, GAJury, PCIS,
                          teach our contractors and                              TIPS and E-Filing.
                          other staff the historical and
                                                            Most Valuable Job Skill? Twenty-three years of
    legal context of our objectives, as well as system
                                                            experience as Deputy Clerk and Chief Deputy Clerk
    requirements and configurations.
                                                            of the Superior Court of Baldwin County. This
    What is a highlight of your work/project over           experience coupled with computer and training
    the past year? Getting so many more courts              skills enable me to be of maximum service to the
    involved with the e-filing project, with the hard       courts the AOC supports.
    work of the e-filing team and field staff.
                                                            Who makes up your family? My husband,
    If you could meet one person, who would it be           Dorman, my daughters, Jennifer Claxton and
    and why? Paul Krugman, New York Times colum-            Jessica Roberts and two beautiful grandchildren,
    nist and recipient of the Nobel Prize in economics.     Mary Elizabeth Claxton and Turner Roberts
    He seems very good at explaining economic theory.
                                                            Favorite Hobby? In the summer, water-skiing and
    Who makes up your family? My wife, Linda                boat riding, fun on the lake. In the winter, snow
    Klein, former president of the State Bar of Georgia,    skiing and watching movies.
    and me.


    Brad Allen                                              Roger Watson
    Desktop Support Specialist
                                                            Applications Developer
                          Job Function: I spend my
                                                                                 Job Function: Software
                          day responding to issues with
                                                                                 development, maintenance
                          users’ computers and other
                                                                                 and support
                          various IT/AV requests.
                                                                                 Most Valuable Job Skill?
                          What is a highlight of your
                                                                                 Java language programming.
                          work/project over the past
                          year? Windows 7 deployment                             Where did you grow up?
                          for AOC users.                                         Georgetown, Guyana

    Where did you grow up? Akron, Ohio                      Favorite Hobby? Running

    Fun Fact Sometimes it takes me longer to walk to
    my car than it does to drive home.


6    On Balance
                                                                                                       On Balance   7

                                                        Kevin Kirk
Sowjanya Aligala                                        Business Analyst
Webmaster                                                                     Job Function: Varies from
                      Job Function: My primary                                training Child Support person-
                      function is to design and                               nel to creating document
                      maintain websites for the                               packages to helping trou-
                      councils, commissions, and                              bleshot problems.
                      committees throughout the
                                                                              AOC Experience: 12 years.
                      judiciary by supporting multi-
                      ple web development projects                            Favorite Hobby?
                      for client teams and maintain-                          Photography
                      ing the SQL database servic-
                                                        If you could meet one person, who would it be
ing the websites. I am also responsible for main-
                                                        and why? With the passing of Steve Jobs I would
taining Confluence and JIRA.
                                                        have to say David Bowie. The man has reinvented
AOC Experience: I have worked at the AOC from           himself numerous times successfully.
past two years and seven months.

Best Part of Your Job? Definitely having to come
up with a new design is the best part, because you
get the chance to try new things and alternative
                                                        Richard Denney
styles of design.                                       Information Systems Analyst
                                                                             Job Function: Support the
Who makes up your family? My family consists
                                                                             Superior Court Judges of the
of five members: my dad, my mom, my two sisters,
                                                                             First Judicial Administrative
and me.
                                                                             District with all of their tech-
                                                                             nological needs as requested;
                                                                             provide programming support
Michael Alexandrou                                                           to MCIS, PCIS, and GA Jury;
                                                                             and support the Probate and
Application Development Manager                                              Magistrate Courts with their
                     Job Function: My primary           technological and business process needs as
                     function is to manage the Child    requested.
                     Support E-filing application
                                                        Favorite Hobby? Teaching at the University of
                     project.
                                                        Phoenix – Business Information Systems and
                     What is a highlight of your        Introduction to Computer Applications and Systems
                     work/project over the past
                                                        Fun Fact: I am a retired First Sergeant from the
                     year: The addition of more
                                                        United States Army and spent my twenty-first birth-
                     than twenty courts into the list
                                                        day patrolling the East/West German border during
of superior courts using our application.
                                                        the Cold War before the fall of the Berlin Wall.
Where did you grow up? Alexandria, Egypt
                                                        Where did you grow up? Ball Ground in
Who makes up your family? My wife, Viktoria,            Cherokee County, Georgia
our son, Nick, and myself.
    From the Board of Court Reporting
    Submitted by Aquaria Smith


                           Town Hall Meetings                 Upcoming Meetings
                               In an effort to engage court        The Board of Court Reporting will hold its next
                           reporters, members of the judi-    quarterly meeting on December 2, 2011, at the
                           ciary, court administrators, and   Macon Chamber of Commerce, where staff is prepar-
                           the legal community from           ing the agenda to include an Open Session for repre-
                           around the state, the Board of     sentative from the state associations, Georgia
                           Court Reporting is conducting      Certified Court Reporters Association (GCCRA) and
      Aquaria Smith        a series of six state-wide Town    Georgia Shorthand Reporters Association (GSRA) to
                           Hall meetings on issues facing     share their concerns from members and the court
    the court reporting profession. Three of the meetings     reporting community, and the administration of a
    were held recently: in the Atlanta region on              public reprimand to (2) two certified court reporters.
    September 10, the Savannah region on October 1, and            Staff is working with the Court Reporters’
    the Tifton region on November 4. The emerging             Training Council (CRTC) on curriculum development
    issues from these meetings included concerns about        of technology courses to include skills enhancement
    contracting, gifting and incentives, and electronic       and real-time reporting and to enhance offerings on
    reporting. There was discussion about the official fee    professionalism and ethics. The CRTC is scheduled to
    schedule for court proceedings, billing rates for free-   meet on March 16, 2012, in Atlanta.
    lance court reporting services, and disclosure require-
    ments. The next set of state-wide meetings is sched-
    uled for early 2012.                                                BCR TOWN HALL MEETING
    License Renewals and Annual Registrations
         Board staff is preparing for the 2012 annual
    license renewals for 1,079 court reporters and regis-
    trations of 117 court reporting firms. As of
    November 1, 2011, 34 court reporters are subject to
    receive a Notice of Revocation for failing to renew
    their certificate by December 31, 2011.
         Additionally, court reporters are required to com-
    plete the mandated continuing education (“CE”)
    requirements by December 31, 2011, to renew their
    certificate in 2012. Typically, 97% of court reporters
    meet the mandated training by attending preapproved         Aquaria Smith (standing) greets those in attendance at
    course offerings from the Institute of Continuing           the Savannah Town Hall meeting on October 1, 2011.

    Judicial Education (ICJE).




8    On Balance
                                                                                                            On Balance      9

Quality Improvement Child Representation Project


T
          he Supreme Court of Georgia’s Committee on              (“Model”). This Model is largely based on the 1996
          Justice for Children, staffed through the               ABA Standards of Practice for Lawyers Who
          Administrative Office of the Courts, has part-          Represent Children in Abuse and Neglect Cases with
nered with child welfare leaders across the state to              child engagement components.
engage in the Quality Improvement Child                                In 2010, QIC-ChildRep sought proposals from
Representation Project. This study, sponsored by the              entities willing to implement the Model to measure
University of Michigan Law School through the U.S.                its effectiveness. With the support of judges and juve-
Children’s Bureau, seeks to gather empiri-                                nile court stakeholders from across the state,
cally-based data on legal representation of                               Georgia was awarded the grant in 2011.
children in abused and neglected cases.                                    As a QIC-ChildRep Research and
Georgia was chosen, along with                                            Demonstration site, Georgia has an opportuni-
Washington State, to serve as a Research                                  ty to contribute to the knowledge base for
and Demonstration site after a competitive                                ‘what works’ to improve the lives of abused
selection process. The study will be facili-                              and neglected children. The Georgia team is
tated through the Georgia Supreme Court                                   now working to gather information on attor-
Committee on Justice for Children, the           Araceli Jacobs staffs    neys in the participating jurisdictions, and
Barton Child Law and Policy Center at            QIC-ChildRep             training those attorneys on CPRS — the web-
Emory University School of Law, and the Georgia                   based system used for data collection. Sixteen juve-
Association of Counsel for Children.                              nile courts have agreed to participate in the study.
     The Quality Improvement Child Representation                 Half of the attorneys participating will receive train-
Project, also known as QIC-ChildRep, is a five-year,              ing in the Best Practice Model in the early months of
$5 million project to gather, develop, and communi-               2012. The other half will remain in a control group
cate knowledge on child representation. QIC-                      and will be asked to submit data without any QIC-
ChildRep began in 2009 when the U.S. Children’s                   specific training. The project will run for four years.
Bureau named the University of Michigan Law                            Ms. Araceli Jacobs, a recent graduate of
School the National Quality Improvement Center on                 American University Washington College of Law, is
the Representation of Children in the Child Welfare               the project coordinator for this project. While in law
System. The University of Michigan’s partner is                   school, she interned for Judge Gregory Jackson in the
Chapin Hall, a child welfare policy research center, at           District of Columbia Superior Court, the American
the University of Chicago. Chapin Hall will conduct               Bar Association Criminal Justice Division, and the
the evaluation of the research and demonstration                  Counsel for Child Abuse and Neglect. Araceli also
sites.                                                            worked in the General Practice Clinic as a student
     In its first year, QIC-ChildRep gathered informa-            attorney and for the Mid-Atlantic Innocence Project.
tion on child representation nationally. The project              In 2011, she received the Peter M. Cicchino Public
reviewed Court Improvement Program (CIP)                          Service Honors certificate for her pro bono work in
Reassessments, CFSR Statewide Assessments, and                    juvenile law. Prior to law school, Araceli was a spe-
First Star Reports. The project also reviewed state               cial education teacher in South Florida as a part of
statutes, court rules, academic literature, and conduct-          the Teach for America program. Araceli enjoys work-
ed stakeholder interviews as a part of its assessment.            ing in all aspects of child law, including education
The project utilized this information to develop a                law.
Best Practice Model of Children Representation                         For more information contact Ms. Jacobs at
                                                                  araceli.jacobs@gaaoc.us
     Staff Notes
     Director’s Division                                          Mark Williams began as Policy Fiscal Analyst on
     Mike Cuccaro has been named Assistant Director of            September 16, 2011. Previous to his employment with
     Governmental and Trial Court Liaison. His duties             the AOC, Mark worked as a consultant for the
     include directing a diverse                                  Prosecuting Attorneys’ Council, Office of Planning and
     range of support, opera-                                     Budget, Department of Audits, and the Department of
     tional, and programmatic                                     Defense. He takes over the duties held by Kelly Steele.
     activities for the agency:
     including liaisoning with                                    Court Services Division
     governmental entities,                                       Edwin Bell, Program Development Manager, left the
     monitoring General                                           AOC on September 30, 2011 to become Juvenile Court
     Assembly activities, coor-                                   Clerk of Fulton County. Mr. Bell worked at the AOC
     dinating Judicial Branch                                     for six years.
                                     Mike Cuccaro
     responses to legislative pro-
     posals; acting as liaison                                    Justin Brady, AOC Research Associate, left on
     with trial court councils and judges’ monitoring activi-     September 30, 2011, to pursue a career in Human
     ties, providing secretariat support to councils and com-     Resources.
     mittees; and coordinating judicial branch Information
     Technology plan in conjunction with AOC Chief                Debra Oliver, Administrative Assistant, left the AOC
     Information Technology Officer and special projects for      on October 15 to work for MARTA.
     the Director of the AOC.
          Mike has been with the AOC since July 2010. He          The Research Section welcomes Josh Becker who will
     previously worked with the Georgia Technology                begin as a Research Associate on November 16, 2011.
     Authority and the Council of Superior Court Judges.


      Employees Participate in Agency-wide                        Wall of Directors
      Work Study
      AOC staff recently participated in a Work Study at the
      behest of the Communications Section to assess the
      primary needs of the organization’s stakeholders.
      Employees were asked to record work interactions on
      a daily basis for two weeks from October 24 -
      November 4. Each interaction — whether by phone,
      fax, e-mail, or face-to-face communication — was
      recorded along with whom the interaction took place
      including other AOC employees, judges, court person-
      nel, other state agencies, general public, etc. This data
      will be combined with questionnaires completed by
      key staff members to create a marketing/communica-
      tions plan for the agency which will include a website      A new feature in the office is the addition of portraits of the previ-
      re-design. If you have ideas about how we can               ous AOC Directors and group shots of the current Supreme Court
      improve our communications with you, please email           and Court of Appeals. The pictures are located near the front
      publications@gaaoc.us                                       desk of the AOC office.


10    On Balance
                                                                                                        On Balance   11

Legislative Gear-up
Submitted by Christopher Causey

                        The AOC’s Governmental              Criminal Justice Reform for Georgians met monthly
                        Affairs Division has recently       to establish recommendations and findings intended
                        been renamed to the                 to develop legislation for the 2012 General Assembly.
                        Government and Judicial/Trial       The ultimate goals of these findings should advance
                        Court Liaison. Under the super-     state policies, practices and programs that reduce
                        vision of the Director, our role    growth of the state’s prison population and contain
                        encompasses staff level interac-    corrections costs. In addition, the Council aims to
                        tion with the Governor’s Office,    improve public safety by reinvesting a potion of the
 Christopher Causey
                        day-to-day liaison to members       savings in strategies that reduce crime and recidi-
and staff of the General Assembly, and management           vism. Lastly, the recommendations and finding
of relationships with the classes of trial courts, the      should hold offenders accountably by strengthening
State Bar, and other agencies and officials of the trial    community-based supervision, sanctions and services.
courts.                                                     These finding and recommendations are to be pub-
     Throughout the summer we have been preparing           lished early November.
for the 2012 Legislative Session. With several seats             Other legislation we look to track closely during
being vacated in the General Assembly over the past         the upcoming session includes: HB 155 – Increased
few months, we will be monitoring the November              protections afforded accused, HB 272 - Juvenile
and December special elections very closely. Vacant         court; rehearing an order of associate juvenile court
seats include House Districts 10, 25, and 68. The spe-      judge and SB 236 - Driver's Licenses; persons con-
cial election runoff to fill House District 43, formerly    victed under the influence; allow certain drivers with
held by the late Bobby Franklin (R-Cobb), was won           suspended licenses; limited driving permits. These
by political newcomer John Carson. Open Senate              bills were introduced during the 2011 Legislative
seats to be filled during the November special elec-        Session.
tion include Senate Districts 28 and 50, formerly held           In December, we will be rolling out a new leg-
by Sen. Mitch Seabaugh (R-Sharpsburg) and Sen. Jim          islative website for use during the session. Simply
Butterworth (R- Cornelia) respectively.                     visit www.georgiacourts.gov and click on
     Also, over the summer the Special Council on           “Legislative Session”



                                                           Golfing for a Good Cause

                                                           On September 28, 2011 AOC staffers Andrew
                                                           Theus (far left with Marine honor guard), Facilities
                                                           Operations and Planning Specialist, and Randy
                                                           Dennis, Financial Administration Division Director,
                                                           competed in the MajGen Warren R. Johnson
                                                           Memorial Fund Raiser Golf Tournament to raise
                                                           money for wounded soldiers and their families.

				
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