Civil Division’s Administrative Judge to finish 55 years in the Practice of Law
Fort Wayne, Ind. – Allen Superior Court Judge Stanley A. Levine, will retire in December, upon completion of 20 years on the bench and a 55-year legal career.
Judge Levine, who currently serves as Administrative Judge of Superior Court’s Civil Division, and as its Probate Judge, was appointed by former Governor Frank O’Bannon in January 1999. He was re-elected three times (in 2002, 2008 and 2014). His final day on the bench will be Dec. 31, 2018.
“Adherence to the rule of law is one of the things that make our nation great,” Levine said. “Every citizen of this nation has access to our Court system to settle disputes in a systematic and just fashion. Each time that I have walked into our Allen County Courthouse, I have been awed, not only by the majesty and beauty of this building, but to be a part of this process of dispensing justice.”
Judge Levine informed his fellow Superior Court Judges and his friends and fellow Judges in the Indiana judicial branch of his intent to retire over the past several days, and communicated his decision to Chief Justice Loretta Rush of the Indiana Supreme Court on Aug. 13, 2018.
Judge Levine is a graduate of South Side High School in Fort Wayne, and received its Distinguished Alumni Award. He is a graduate of Indiana University and the Maurer School of Law in Bloomington. Before becoming a Judge, he was listed in an annual publication of “The Best Lawyers in America“ and was selected as a Fellow of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers.
He began a lifetime of public service by enlisting in the Indiana Air National Guard in December 1963, and serving until 1971, and finished his military career as a Captain and Staff Judge Advocate of the 122d Tactical Fighter Group in Fort Wayne. He was President of Legal Aid of Fort Wayne, Inc., the Fort Wayne Jewish Federation and the Allen County Bar Association. He also served as Legal Advisor to the City Council of Fort Wayne from 1984-1995. He has been an elected member of the Board of Managers of the Indiana Judges Association and a Board Member of Saint Joseph Hospital for more than 10 years, and is the vice-chair of that board. He was also recognized as a Distinguished Barrister by The Indiana Lawyer in 2010.
During his time on the Civil Division bench he has adjudicated a variety of complex cases, including personal injury and medical malpractice cases, products liability cases, contract and employment cases, and estate, guardianship and trust litigation. His judicial tasks have involved consideration of multiple motions filed in lawsuits and presiding at numerous motion hearings, bench trials and jury trials every year.
In addition to his caseload and his administrative tasks, Judge Levine has devoted substantial time to improving the Court’s facilities. Along with Judges Nancy Eshcoff Boyer and Frances C. Gull, he oversaw the expansion and modernization of Courtroom 107. That project resulted in a showcase of efficient courtroom design and state-of-the-art courtroom technology and amenities that has been recognized statewide as a model for how courts can update courtrooms, particularly in historic buildings.
“A good Judge has to have maturity, legal experience, life experience, wisdom and common sense,” said Judge David A. Avery of the Allen Superior Court Civil Division. “Judge Levine has all of those. After being a well-respected attorney in the Allen County Bar, he brought considerable experience to his role as a Judge. He has worked hard to educate litigants and the public alike on the role of the Courts. His contributions to the judiciary will be missed.”
Fort Wayne attorney and Fort Wayne City Councilman Michael Barranda stated: “I had the privilege of clerking for Judge Levine for a year in 2004 and 2005. After a dozen years, I still haven’t stopped learning from him. Attorneys know that they have to come prepared when they appear before him. But they also know that as tough as Judge Levine can be, he will also be fair and thoughtful in his opinions and rulings.”
“For those of us who have had the privilege of appearing before Judge Levine, his retirement repre-sents a substantial loss,” said Karen Moses, Partner at Faegre Baker Daniels LLP. “For the past 20 years, Judge Levine has been the type of Judge that every trial attorney and every litigant hopes to find wearing a black robe. Judge Levine is intelligent, fair, hard-working, incisive and kind. He treats litigants, attorneys, clerks, staff and visitors with the utmost respect and dignity. He runs his courtroom efficiently and effectively, always remembering that his rulings have a significant impact on those appearing before him. Judge Levine has served this community well and his retirement is certainly well earned, however he will be missed.”
“As a defense lawyer who tries cases all over the State of Indiana, I admire Judge Levine’s approach to his judicial decisions,” said Scott L. Bunnell Partner at Hunt Suedhoff Kalamaros LLP. “He is always patient and thoughtful in his questioning of attorneys, and is extremely fair and impartial to both plaintiff and defendant’s attorneys. I have had the pleasure of working with Judge Levine every year that he was on the bench. While I respected him for his skills as a Judge, he could always be counted on to keep things light and in perspective. He is a good Judge, and I will miss him.”
“Being a Judge was an aspiration for me and countless other attorneys who have taken the bench,” added Judge Levine. “It has been an enormous responsibility which I have strived to fulfill to best of my abilities, but an even greater privilege. To all of the people of this County who have given me that privilege, I wish to say sincerely and humbly, ‘Thank you.’”
Judge Levine’s replacement will be appointed by Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb from a group of finalists to be identified by the Allen County Judicial Nominating Commission. The timing of that process will be announced in the future by the Governor’s Office.
That person will complete the remainder of Judge Levine’s current term, which ends Dec. 31, 2020.
For a full biography of Judge Levine, visit https://allensuperiorcourt.us/meet-the-judges