Judge Robert Carolan
Judge of District Court, First Judicial District, Minnesota, 1987 to present time.
Dakota County Attorney, 1979-1987.
Chief prosecutor /administrator. Directed and supervised a staff of 20 prosecutors and 30 support staff persons. The office handled more than 3,000 cases per year.
Assistant Dakota County Attorney, 1974-1979.
Special Assistant Attorney General, Minnesota Attorney General’s Office, 1970-1974.
Research Assistant, Dean, N.William Hines, College of Law, University of Iowa, 1969-1970.
Law Clerk, Miller, Pearson & Gloe, Decorah, Iowa, Summer, 1969.
PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATIONS, ACTIVITIES AND HONORS:
Named “Judge of the Year” by the American Board of Trial Advocates, Minnesota Chapter, 2004. Minnesota District Judges Association, 1988 to present
Minnesota State Bar Association, Civil Litigation Council, Secretary, 1992-1993
Dakota County Community Corrections Advisory Board, Chair, 1989.
Dakota County Intermediate Sanctions Task Force
National District Attorneys Association
- Vice President, 1987
- State Director (Minnesota), 1984-1987
Minnesota County Attorneys’ Association
- Board of Directors, 1980-1987
- Chair, Minnesota Sentencing Guidelines Subcommittee, 1985
- Chair, Charging and Plea Negotiations Subcommittee, 1985
Juris Doctor , with distinction, University of Iowa, College of Law, May, 1970.
Board Member, Iowa Law Review (55
Bachelor of Arts, magna cum laude, St. Mary’s College, Winona, Mn., May, 1967 Research Assistant, Professor Toyo Ichikawa, Sociology Department
L-trytophan litigation in Minnesota
Presided over all personal injury lawsuits in Minnesota that occurred as a result of persons consuming certain products containing L-tryptophan. L-tryptophan is an amino acid that affects how the brain regulates sleep, pain, appetite and emotions. These lawsuits arose from the outbreak in 1989 of a rare and allegedly incurable blood disease known as eosinophilia myalgia syndome (EMS). Victims of the disease experienced nerve damage, joint pain, fatigue, scarring of the skin and internal organs including the heart and lungs, muscle pain and a high white blood cell count. Some victims died as a result of the disease.
The epidemic was traced to L-tryptophan manufactured by a Japanese corporation that allegedly introduced an impurity into the L-tryptophan when it altered its manufacturing process. More than 1,500 cases were reported throughout the United States, and approximately 100 cases were filed in Minnesota. To expedite the settlement of the Minnesota cases, I instituted extensive case management orders, monthly status conferences with the court, expedited telephone hearings, stringent trial and pre-trial deadlines and mediation.
Uniform Parentage Act Task Force, Co-Chair, (2001-2002).
The Uniform Parentage Act Task Force was created by the Minnesota Legislature and charged with the responsibility of advising the Legislature with respect to whether the Uniform Parentage Act should be adopted in Minnesota. The Task Force was made up of over 30 representatives from various sectors in Minnesota. It issued a report to the Legislature with numerous comments and recommendations.
Business Court Committee
Member of the ad hoc committee created by Minnesota Supreme Court Chief Justice Kathleen Blatz to study whether a special business court should be established in Minnesota. 1999.
Minnesota Judicial College
Co-chair of Civil Litigation Department, 1998 to 2001.
Discovery Task Force (Civil litigation Section of the Minnesota State Bar Association) Co-chair. Surveyed Minnesota attorneys and judges in a series of statewide focus groups to study the various pretrial discovery procedures used in civil litigation in Minnesota. The committee issued a report and made several recommendations to the Minnesota Supreme Court for improving the system in Minnesota.
William Mitchell College of Law, Adjunct Faculty
Legal Practicum, 1990-2001; Advanced Trial Advocacy, 1981-1999.
Minnesota Advocacy Institute, Lead Faculty, 1990-1994
Conducted seven clinical trial skill courses for practicing attorneys.
Supreme Court Continuing Education, Faculty, 1989
Conducted a course for new members of the judiciary: “New Judge Orientation”
PUBLICATIONS and PRESENTATIONS
Eighth Annual Products Liability Conference, Minnesota Legal Education, luncheon speaker, “Managing Complex Products Liability Litigation Effectively,” 1995.
The Third Annual Civil Litigation Institute, Minnesota State Bar Association, panelist: “Lessons Learned from Complex Litigation that Apply to All Civil Cases, 1995
Minnesota Legal Education, panel member, “Insurance Claims and Management,” addressing issues involving insurance claims in complex tort litigation, 1993.
Iowa Law Review, note: “ Conflicts of Interests of State and Local Legislators, 55:450.
Iowa Law Review, comment: “Trademarks – Exclusive Use – Federal Registrant Granted Exclusive State Use – Except in Specific Area Where State Registrant Had Prior Use,” 54:933.
Minnesota Prosecutors Manual, chapter entitled, “Extradition,” 1976.
Judge David L. Knutson
Appointed June 29, 2004.
William Mitchell College of Law - J.D., 1986.
St. Olaf College - B.A., Majors - Philosophy & Political Science, 1982.
Burnsville Senior High School, 1978.
Private practice of law as a partner in several law firms in Apple Valley and Burnsville, MN, 1986-2004.
Minnesota State Senator - District 37, representing Apple Valley, Burnsville, and Rosemount, MN, 1993-2004.
Minnesota State Courts, 1986.
Federal District Court, District of Minnesota, 1986.
U.S. Court of Appeals - 8th Circuit, 1987.
U.S. Tax Court, 1989.
State Task Forces:
Appointed as a member of the following state legal task forces: Civil Legal Assistance, 1995; Juvenile Detention Facilities, 1995-1997; Foster Care and Adoption, 1997-1998; Parental Cooperation, 1999-2000; Commission on Legal Services, 2003-2004.
Minnesota District Judges Association, Minnesota State Bar Association, First District Bar Association, Eighth District Bar Association and Dakota County Bar Association.
Appointed by the Chief Justice to the Minnesota Judicial Council in May of 2006 for a 3 year term.
Public Service and Community Organizations:
Currently a member of the Burnsville Breakfast Rotary Club, Prince of Peace Lutheran Church, Dakota County Law Library, and serves as a high school and college Mock Trial competition judge.
Formerly a member of the Burnsville, Apple Valley and Northern Dakota County Chambers of Commerce; Board member and President of Legal Assistance of Dakota County, Ltd.; Dakota County Technical College Foundation; ServeMinnesota, Inc.; Burnsville Foundation, Capital Fund Drive Co-Chair; Our Saviour’s Shelter for the Homeless; Burnsville Jaycees; Minnesota Valley YMCA, Board of Directors and Chairman of the Board; Valley Athletic Association, volunteer coach.
Honors and Awards:
Ten Outstanding Young Minnesotan Award (Minnesota Jaycees), 1993.
Lake Conference Distinguished Alumni Award, 1996.
Pro Bono Publico Attorney Award (Minnesota Legal Services Coalition), 1998.
YMCA Distinguished Volunteer Award, 1999.
Burnsville High School Distinguished Alumni Award, 2001.
Married with two children.
Judge Michael J. Mayer
Eagan. Born Chicago, Il 1960. St. Mary’s University, Winona (B.A. cum laude, 1981), Hamline University School of Law (J.D. 1985, law review), Vice Chair/Chair- Governor’s Juvenile Justice Advisory Committee (1995-present), Chair- Midwest Region- Coalition for Juvenile Justice, Washington, DC (1998-present), Chair- Government Relations- Coalition for Juvenile Justice, Washington, DC (2000-2002), Congressman Jim Ramstad’s Law Enforcement Advisory Committee (1994-2004), Member-Department of Justice (OJJDP) Federal Advisory Committee, Washington, DC (2002-present), Prosecuting Attorney, City of Burnsville (1986-2004), Prosecuting Attorney, City of Eagan (1989-2004), private practice of law (1985-2004), Past President-Dakota County Bar Association, Coach youth sports- Eagan Athletic Association (1996-present), Confirmation Mentor- Easter Lutheran Church, Eagan, MN. Appointed June 29, 2004.
Judge Kathryn Davis Messerich
Appointed March 9, 2004, by Governor Tim Pawlenty.
J.D., William Mitchell College of Law, 1987 (Law Review Editor 1985-1986)
M.S., Maternal-Child Nursing, University of Minnesota, 1984
B.S., Nursing, magna cum laude, Northern Michigan University, 1979
Shareholder- Halleland, Lewis, Nilan, Sipkins & Johnson, P.A., 2000-2004
Associate General Counsel for Litigation- Allina Health System, 1997-2000
Shareholder- Bassford, Lockhart, Truesdell & Briggs, P.A., 1992-1997
Associate- Bassford, Lockhart, Truesdell & Briggs, P.A., 1991-1992
Associate- Lommen, Nelson, Cole & Stageberg, P.A., 1987-1991
Registered Nurse, 1979-1987
Minnesota Supreme Court, 1987
Federal District Court, District of Minnesota, 1987
Wisconsin Supreme Court, 1993
Teaching and Lecturing:
University of Minnesota Law School Adjunct Professor, Health Law, 2004 and 2005
William Mitchell College of Law, Legal Writing Instructor, 1993-1995
University of St. Thomas Law School, Mentor
Judge Messerich has lectured numerous times for local and national audiences in addition to conducting professional presentations on civil litigation, insurance coverage, legal ethics, medical privacy, professional disciplinary matters, alternative dispute resolution, professional liability litigation, and civil commitment.
Professional Organizations, Committees, and Activities:
Hennepin County Bar Association 4th District Ethics Committee:
Vice Chair, 1993-1998
Minnesota Defense Lawyers Association:
Executive Committee, 1998-2001
Board of Directors, 1996-1998
Editorial Committee, 1988-1993
Creative Dispute Resolution Board of Directors, 1996-1998
Minnesota State Bar Association, (Certified Civil Trial Specialist), 1987-present
Wisconsin State Bar Association, 1993-present
Defense Research Institute, 1987-2004
Minnesota Women Lawyers, 1998-present
Minnesota Board of Continuing Legal Education Board Member, 2003-present
Minnesota District Judges Association, 2004-present:
Civil Jury Instruction Guide Committee, 2004-present
Vice Chair Security Committee, 2006-present
First Judicial District Executive Committee, 2005-present
American Board of Trial Advocates
Minnesota State Bar Association Mock Trial Competition:
Coach, Harding High School, 1990-1992 and 1994-1995
Southwest Junior High School, 1993
Henry Sibley High School, 2003-present
Wisconsin State Bar Association Mock Trial Competition:
Awards and Honors:
Minnesota Defense Lawyers Association "President's Award," 2004
Defense Research Institute "Exceptional Service Award," 2002
Northern Michigan University "Distinguished Alumni Award," 2002
Minnesota Lawyer "Lawyer of the Year," 2001
Judge Richard G. Spicer
Assistant Chief Judge Edward Lynch
Appointed as District Court Judge on July 1, 1989. Elected 1990, 1996 and 2002.
B.A., Magna cum Laude, College of St. Thomas, 1970
J.D., cum Laude, University of Minnesota, 1973
Attorney- Private Practice, South St. Paul, 1973-1989
Assistant Chief Judge- First Judicial District, July 2005-present
Chief Judge- First Judicial District, July 1993-June 1997
Minnesota Conference of Chief Judges, 1993-1997
Member of Minnesota Courts' Strategic Planning Committee, 1995-1996
Chair of Minnesota Courts' Strategic Plan Implementation Committee, July 1997-June 2000
Minnesota Courts' Intercourt Committee, June 2000-July 2005
Chair- Minnesota Courts' Public Trust and Confidence Committee May 1999-December 2005
Minnesota Courts' Transformation Workgroup, 2004
Co-Chair- Judiciary Subcommittee of Minnesota State Bar Association's Pro Se Implementation Committee January 2000-July 2002
Co-chair/chair- Minnesota Courts' Legislative Advisory Workgroup, 2000-2006
Minnesota Conference of Chief Judges' Pro Se Issues Committee, 1996
Minnesota Conference of Chief Judges' Pro Se Implementation Committee 1997
Minnesota Probation Standards Task Force 1993 and 1994.
Additional Professional Experience:
Member of Working Group on Criminal Justice System Efficiency created by Minnesota Legislature, 2002.
Past faculty for Minnesota Courts' New Judge Orientation.
Presenter at various conferences on topics related to the justice system, including: pro se litigation, community outreach, customer service in the courts, and cooperation and collaberation in the criminal justice system.
Awards and Honors
Minnesota District Judges' Assocation "Distringuished Service Award," 1997
Judge Rex Stacey
1982 J.D. William Mitchell College of Law
1976 B.S. St. Cloud State University
1983 Judge, Dakota County District Court
1982-1996 Attorney, Private practice
Elevated to Bench
Appointed on September 3, 1996