Date July 10 , 2001 Contact: Laura Kiernan
Public Information Officer
271-2646 x359

 

NEWS RELEASE

 

CONCORD—Chief Justice David A. Brock announced today that Julianne Lodes, the supervisor of the juvenile division at Manchester District Court, will receive a "Spirit of the Judiciary" award on July 13 for her professional and personal dedication to children and families involved in the court system.

"In the juvenile justice system, our goal is to deal with kids in trouble, and help those who need protection," Brock said. "People like Julianne Lodes, who work tirelessly to try to resolve the complicated issues involved in these cases, make a very valuable contribution, not just to the juvenile court, but to our entire community."

Lodes, who has been the court’s juvenile intake officer since 1996, has also worked in the Nashua and Milford District Courts in the civil departments. The Juvenile Division at the Manchester District Court has one of the highest caseloads in the state, dealing with delinquency, children in need of supervision and abuse and neglect cases.

"Her role is to interpret and explain the complex juvenile justice process to people who are frightened, angry and overwhelmed by highly charged emotional circumstances," wrote court clerk Paula J. Hurley in nominating Lodes for the award. "Though the paper processing demands on her time are tremendous, Julie never loses sight of the fact that there is a child behind every one of the nearly 1,000 cases she handles each year," Hurley wrote.

Lodes said that while her job can be demanding and sometimes frustrating, her commitment to trying to help children and their families is reinforced by "the importance of the work" and the positive moments.

"One time we were all crying about a mother who during five years had been in drug rehabilitation and in jail," Lodes said recalling one court hearing. "She got her life pulled together and all her children appeared with her and the case worker asked that the case be closed," Lodes said, "The judge congratulated her."

"It’s those cases that keep you going because there are success stories," she added.

Juvenile probation and parole officer Patty Murphy, in supporting Lodes for the award, said she always shows a sense of pride and devotion to her work at the court. "Julie is frequently the first person that parents deal with when they go to court with their children," Murphy commented, "she seems to have the ability to make them feel less stressful about the whole court procedure."

Lodes, who lives in Amherst with her husband William, has two grown sons, William Jr. and Christopher. The Spirit of the Judiciary Award was established in 1999 by Chief Justice Brock and is awarded each month to honor a court employee for outstanding public service.

"The District Courts are the front lines in the daily combat of judicial proceedings," wrote Manchester lawyer Thomas A. Ficarra, who has seen Lodes’ at work over the past 10 years and joined in nominating her for the award. "Judges, lawyers, defendants, police officers, witnesses, parents and victims all carry with them particular demands and Julie handles them with grace and compassion," he said.