The Sixth Judicial Circuit Court includes Champaign, DeWitt, Douglas, Macon, Moultrie and Piatt counties. Each county has its own courthouse and court, but they are blocked together to form the Sixth Circuit. There are 14 circuit judges and 11 associate judges; each judge may hear cases in any of the aforementioned counties. Judges are elected in their counties. Once elected, they can serve across the entire Sixth Circuit.

This race determines the replacement for retiring Judge Tom Difanis. Democrat Scott Lerner is running against Republican Jason Bohm. Bohm currently serves on the Sixth Circuit; he was appointed to fill a retirement vacancy in 2018.

Jason Bohm

Bohm is from Mahomet, and earned his law degree from the University of Illinois College of Law. He currently serves as a Circuit Judge on the Sixth Circuit, where he oversees cases involving "chancery, mentals, miscellaneous remedies, and law jury greater than $50,000." Prior to his appointment to the Sixth Circuit, he served as a federal prosecutor for the Central District of Illinois, first in the Springfield office, and then in the Urbana office.

From his questionnaire in the News-Gazette:

I would continue to work toward making the Circuit Court a place where residents of the Sixth Judicial Circuit can come to peacefully resolve their disputes. My courtroom will continue to be a place where all parties are treated fairly, impartially and receive the due process of law.

Scott A. Lerner

Lerner was born and raised in Champaign County, and earned his law degree from the University of Illinois College of Law. He has been a lawyer for almost 30 years, with experience as a public defender, and in juvenile and family law. Lerner cites Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Thurgood Marshall as inspirations, and appears to be committed to racial equity in front of the law. On a fun note, Lerner is also the author of a series of thriller novels set in C-U.

You can watch an interview with Lerner here.

From his questionnaire in the News-Gazette:

My most important priority as judge would be to treat each person before me with respect. Thurgood Marshall said: "In recognizing the humanity of our fellow beings, we pay ourselves the highest tribute." I want to look upon each person before me as a person who is owed dignity and respect.

Here is their recent Candidate Forum, hosted by the League of Women Voters, NAACP of Champaign County, the News-Gazette, and WILL.

Top images from (l) Judge Jason Bohm Facebook page, and (r) Scott Lerner for Illinois 6th Circuit Judge Facebook page.