The Illinois Supreme Court announced today that it has appointed Stephen McGlynn to the St. Clair County bench to fill a vacancy created by recent resignation of resident Circuit Judge Michael Cook.
Cook stepped down from the bench late last month, shortly after he was hit with federal drug and firearm charges. He has pleaded not guilty and is seeking drug treatment at an out of state facility.
McGlynn’s appointment takes effect July 1 and will expire Dec. 1, 2014. If he wants to keep the judgeship the court appointed him to, he will have to win the November 2014 election for the seat.
"I appreciate the Court's quick response to this vacancy," Chief Judge C. John Baricevic said in the court’s news release about the appointment. "Judge McGlynn’s previous experience on the bench in this Circuit makes this an appropriate appointment at this time."
McGlynn’s appointment to resident circuit judge marks the third time the Supreme Court has appointed him to the judiciary. The court in 2005 appointed him to the Fifth District Appellate Court and in 2010, to the St. Clair County bench.
He also previously worked in private practice with McGlynn & McGlynn in Belleville and served as a special assistant attorney general, as well as corporate counsel to the Kaskaskia Regional Port District.
During his stint on the appellate court that ended in 2006, when he lost the election for that seat, McGlynn “wrote 109 decisions and orders, and participated in 390 separate criminal and civil matters,” according to the court’s release.
He also ran in last November’s election as a Republican for an open seat on the appellate court, but was defeated by Democrat Judy Cates. That race garnered quite a bit of attention, as both candidates filed complaints against each.
Cates filed a complaint with the State Board of Elections over a campaign disclosure that was eventually dismissed and McGlynn filed complaints with the ISBA Standing Committee on Supreme/Appellate Election Campaign Tone and Conduct over campaign advertisements.
His complaints dealt with Cates’ television ad that focused on his record on foreclosure orders and a radio commercial that accused him of putting drug dealers back on the street. The ISBA committee recommended that Cates pull her television commercial, but she stood behind it.
In the court’s release, McGlynn said he “respectfully and humbly” accepts the responsibility that the Supreme Court justices have charged him to fulfill.
He added, "I pledge to the people of this county that I will perform the duties assigned to me with justice and empathy for all who appear before me."