Daily Briefs

Judge Laura Mack to retire from 29th District Court March 1

Judge Laura Mack of the 29th District Court is retiring effective March 1.  She was appointed by Gov. Granholm on January 12, 2004, to replace Judge Carolyn Archbold, who retired at the end of 2003. Mack was affirmed by the voters in 2004 to serve out the remainder of Archbold’s term, which ended in 2006.  In 2006, Mack was elected to a full 6-year term; she was re-elected in 2012 and 2018.

Because Mack is in the middle of her six-year term, Whitmer will appoint Mack’s replacement. Any replacement must be a lawyer in good standing who lives in Wayne and who has at least five years of experience as a lawyer. That person would then be required to be on the ballot in 2020 to be affirmed by the voters. If elected in November, Mack’s replacement would serve until the end of the current term, 2024.

Although Mack is retiring from the bench, she is planning to remain a director of Families Against Narcotics NW Wayne Chapter, the Wayne 100 Club, and the Michigan Association of Treatment Court Professionals. She will also maintain memberships in the state-sponsored Mental Health Court Advisory Committee, the Wayne County Jail Diversion project, and the Michigan Diversion Council Incompetent to Stand Trial Workgroup, the Wayne County District Judges Association and the Michigan District Judges Association. She is also willing to serve as visiting judge for local courts. She will also be taking over as president of the Wayne Rotary Club in July.

Mack remains committed to ending stigma and helping people with substance use disorders and mental illnesses stay out of the criminal justice system by securing the treatment they need. Her husband, Milt Mack, is also deeply committed to this ideal. Milt is on a task force with state court administrators, chief justices and community mental health professionals throughout the country to re-write civil commitment and forensic laws to more effectively and humanely deal with people suffering from mental illness in the court systems. As a district court judge with 16 years of experience, Mack has valuable insights into these problems, and she is looking forward to assisting and traveling with her husband.

Mack also plans to volunteer her time to help mental health courts throughout the state, including the Western Wayne County Regional Behavioral Treatment Court that she started at the 29th District Court 6 years ago. It is very important to her that the treatment court continues. She also will help her successor continue the other outreach court programs, such as the Truancy Diversion Program, the Eviction Diversion Program, juvenile jurisdiction, the Teen Court program, Law Day and Constitution Day activities at local schools, and the informal internship program.

In her spare time, Mack is looking forward to exercising regularly and learning yoga.

“It’s been a pleasure serving the people of Wayne for over 16 years,” said Mack. “I am looking forward to the next chapter.”


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