Madison County law librarian and pro bono coordinator for the Third Circuit Pro Bono Committee Betsy Mahoney has been appointed to the Court Guidance and Training Committee of the Illinois Supreme Court’s Access to Justice Commission.
The Illinois Supreme Court formed the commission to address the issues faced by those attending court who do not have attorneys and those for whom English is not their primary language.
It is composed of a judge and a circuit clerk from each of the five appellate districts and two law librarians. The law librarian from Kane County has joined the committee for the northern part of the state.
Mahoney is member as a downstate representative of law libraries.
“Ms. Mahoney is a valuable member of our team and assists the individuals who are representing themselves and use our Madison County Law Library," said Madison County Chief Judge Dave Hylla.
"She also administers programs our own circuit has started. She will be a great asset to the committee and we are proud that she was selected."
Mahoney has been the Madison County law librarian since June 2011. She is also a former vice president of the Illinois Heartland Library System. Mahoney attended college at Indiana University where she received a B.A. and also earned her Master’s Degree in Library Science.
The Court Guidance and Training Committee is charged with creating and finalizing a proposed policy on assistance to self-represented litigants which will then be submitted to the full commission for review and adoption. The committee’s other current project is the development of a pamphlet for judges which includes a list of "best practices" in dealing with unrepresented litigants in court as well as a summary of relevant court rules concerning self-represented litigants and access to justice.