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Allen Superior Court Judge – Civil Division
*Craig Bobay, Allen Circuit Court magistrate
*Jennifer DeGroote, Allen Superior Court magistrate, Small Claims Division
*Michael Michmerhuizen, partner at law firm Barrett & McNagny
Michael McAlexander, Allen County chief deputy prosecutor
Laurie Gray, attorney, author, owner of Socratic Parenting LLC, former Allen County deputy prosecutor
Carrie Hawk Gutman, associate at law firm Hawk, Haynie, Kammeyer & Chickedantz
Patrick Proctor, partner at law firm Eilbacher Fletcher
John Cowan, associate at law firm Tourkow, Crell, Rosenblatt & Johnston
*– Denotes three nominations for governor’s selection Allen County Judicial Nominating Commission
Jonathan C. Ray, president and CEO, Fort Wayne Urban League
Edward E. Beck, partner at law firm Shambaugh, Kast, Beck & Williams
Suzan Rutz, partner at law firm Helmke Beams
Angela J. Moellering, president and CEO, Lutheran Social Services
Mark W. Terrell, CEO, Lifeline Youth and Family Services
James O’Connor Jr., partner at law firm Barrett & McNagny

3 nominated for vacant judgeship


The Allen County judicial nominating commission picked three names Friday to send to Indianapolis for the vacant Allen Superior Court judicial seat.

Indiana Gov. Mike Pence has 60 days to pick one of the three to fill the vacant seat.

Those three are two current Allen County magistrates and a partner at a local law firm.

Allen Circuit Magistrate Craig Bobay, Allen Superior Court Magistrate Jennifer DeGroote and Michael Michmerhuizen, a partner at Barrett & McNagny, have been nominated to fill the seat of Allen Superior Court Judge Dan Heath.

Heath, who served in the Superior Court’s Civil Division, moved to the Superior Court’s Family Relations Division to take the spot of Allen Superior Court Judge Steve Sims, who retired effective Friday.

The three names came from a list of eight candidates who each spent about 40 minutes with the commission Thursday afternoon in the council committee room in the basement of Citizens Square.

The nominating commission was made up of members of the local bar association as well as community leaders, and it was led by Indiana Supreme Court Justice Steven David.

One of the attorneys on the commission was James O’Connor Jr., also a partner at Barrett & McNagny. According to Indiana Supreme Court officials, the partnership was disclosed before the interviews and he would not vote on Michmerhuizen’s candidacy.

O’Connor did not ask Michmerhuizen any questions during Thursday’s interview process.