National Center for State Courts

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National Center for State Courts
National Center for State Courts (NCSC) sign at Williamsburg, VA headquarters
Founded 1971
Type Nonprofit organization
Focus Law
Location
Coordinates 37°15′58″N 76°42′16″W / 37.266179°N 76.704568°W / 37.266179; -76.704568Coordinates: 37°15′58″N 76°42′16″W / 37.266179°N 76.704568°W / 37.266179; -76.704568
Area served United States
Key people Warren E. Burger
Mission Improving judicial administration
Website www.ncsc.org

The National Center for State Courts (NCSC) is a non-profit organization charged with improving judicial administration in the United States and around the world. It functions as a think-tank, library, non-profit consulting firm for the courts, advocate for judicial and legislative reform, and a center of education in the field of judicial administration.[1]

Mission[edit]

The NCSC's mission is to improve judicial administration in the courts of the United States and courts throughout the entire world. To accomplish this goal, the NCSC acts as a non-profit provider of many services to the courts including: research studies, consulting, a variety of educational programs, an extensive web database of information on court administration, the largest library of materials on court administration in the world, and continued assistance in the improvement of inter-branch relations through its lobbying and advocacy services.[2]

History[edit]

In March 1971, Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court, Warren E. Burger, called for the creation of a central resource for the state and local courts at the First National Conference of the Judiciary, in Williamsburg, VA. This conference, attended by the President, Chief Justice, and Attorney General of the U.S. in addition to over 400 other members of the legal community, was the largest and most diverse group to come together to discuss judicial administration in the state courts. It was a reflection of the continuing difficulties faced in the nation's courts during the tenure of the previous Chief Justice, Earl Warren, recognized by both Chief Justice Burger and then-President Richard Milhous Nixon. While the more popular Chief Justice has been widely credited with the first call for the creation of such a resource, in fact, President Nixon was the first to express his support for a central resource for the state and local courts during his opening remarks, which actually occurred the day before Burger's announcement.[3]

Nixon noted the significance of the already existent Federal Judicial Center to the nation's federal courts; stating that it was long-overdue for the state courts to have a similar resource. Chief Justice Burger issued his call for a permanent central resource for the state and local courts on the following day.

Structure and divisions[edit]

The NCSC is divided into three primary offices in the United States, with satellite offices appearing internationally depending on project assignments.

Headquarters, in Williamsburg, VA, houses the Research and Technology Services, Knowledge and Information Services (KIS), Association Management, Communications and Publications, and the Institute for Court Management (Education) divisions. It serves as the primary hub and meeting point for all the Center's various activities and houses the NCSC's Library which contains the largest known collection of court-administration materials.

There are two smaller permanent offices, one in Denver, CO which houses the Court Consulting Services Division; and another in Arlington, VA which houses the Government Relations and International Programs divisions.[4]

Services and publications[edit]

The National Center for State Courts offers a wide array of educational programs.

NCSC also develops illustrated novels with the goal of educating the public on court matters. These novels, previously called comic books, have been empirically validated as being the most effective didactic tool to educate the youth of our nation.

Notes and references[edit]

  1. ^ National Center for State Courts
  2. ^ National Center for State Courts
  3. ^ Low, Erick. The National Center for State Courts: A Commemorative History of Its Structure and Organization in Honor of 20 Years of Service to the State Courts. Williamsburg, VA: National Center for State Courts: April 1991. p. 3
  4. ^ National Center for State Courts