District Judge Steven D. Burns to Retire May 31, 2016

District Judge Steven D. Burns to Retire May 31, 2016

Friday, April 22, 2016

Judge of the District Court, for the Third Judicial District, Steven D. Burns, is retiring effective May 31, 2016. In his letter of retirement to the Governor, Judge Burns noted, “It has been a privilege to serve the people of Nebraska in this position of trust.” In 2014, Judge Burns received the Nebraska Supreme Court’s Outstanding Judge Award for Service to the Community for his volunteerism, which ranges from local, to national, to international activities. At home, Burns is a regular volunteer in the kitchen at Matt Talbot, making and serving dinner for homeless men, women, and children in the city of Lincoln.Judge Burns is well known for his work to increase transparency of the judicial branch. In 2008, he and fellow Retired Judge Karen Flowers opened their courtrooms to camera installation through the Nebraska Broadcasters Association, allowing court proceedings to be livestreamed to the Nebraska Colleges of Law and Journalism for the education of students. Local media were also allowed to use the recorded signal for news broadcasts. Judge Burns is an educator and regular contributor to Nebraska’s Judicial Branch Education programs. According to observers, Judge Burns is an “excellent teacher” who takes the time to make sure the audience is presented information in an understandable way. As recently as last week, Judge Burns served as a panelist at the College of Law for the recognition of the U.S. Supreme Court argument “Nebraska Press Association v. Stuart” ensuring that courts remain open to the media in Nebraska. In addition, Judge Burns has served as president of the Nebraska District Judges Association in 2013, prior to which time he served as Secretary/Treasurer. He also served on several committees of the judges association throughout his career. After taking the bench in 1997, Judge Burns was retained in his position by area voters, most recently in 2012. The first step in replacing Judge Burns will be for the Judicial Resources Commission to call a meeting to determine whether or not, based on judicial workload statistics, his retirement creates a judicial vacancy on the District Court for the Third Judicial District. Resources Commission information: https://supremecourt.nebraska.gov/2546/judicial-resources-commission. Judge Burns’ judicial biography may be found at https://supremecourt.nebraska.gov/3853/honorable-steven-d-burns.