Karmeier Sworn In As Illinois Supreme Court Chief Justice
Surrounded by family and colleagues, Justice Lloyd Karmeier was sworn in for a three-year term in as the 120th chief justice of the Illinois Supreme Court Monday in Springfield. The 76-year-old Karmeier was lauded by his fellow justices during the installation ceremony, including outgoing Chief Justice Rita Garman. He's the chief administrative officer of the state's judicial system and now oversees more than 900 judges in Illinois.
Karmeier was unanimously chosen by his peers. And he had words of gratitude for his fellow justices in return.
“Thank you for your individual and collective wisdom," he said. "Thank you for your advice and your counsel, freely and willingly given, whether sought or not. Thank you for your collegiality and your friendship. And especially, thank you for your support, when support was needed and appreciated.”
Karmeier has served on the state Supreme Court since 2004.
In 2005, he received attention for voting to overturn a $10.1 billion class-action judgement against tobacco company Philip Morris.
Plaintiffs' attorneys wanted him recused from the case, saying he had received contributions from Philip Morris, which Karmeier denied.
That case, and another case involving State Farm, became issues during Karmeier’s 2014 retention election, Karmeier narrowly won retention, despite heavy opposition from trial lawyers.