Milwaukee County Circuit Court Judge Mel Flanagan is the recipient of the 2016 State Bar of Wisconsin Bench and Bar Committee Lifetime Jurist Award. Judge Flanagan recently retired from the Milwaukee County Circuit Court after 23 years as a judge. During that time she presided over challenging cases in both the civil and criminal divisions, with her special interest being in the domestic and sexual violence courts.
Wisconsin Appellate Court Judge Kitty K. Brennan noted in her nomination that since 1999, Judge Flanagan became very involved in teaching as part of the National Judicial Education Program teaching judges and prosecutors, and developing curriculum, about understanding sexual and domestic violence. She taught domestic violence court procedures to undergraduates at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee since 2012.
In July, Judge Flanagan, through the prestigious Fulbright scholarship award, will complete six months teaching and training judges, lawyers and law schools in Bosnia how to set up and effectively operate domestic and sexual violence courts; and how to properly handle child/victim witnesses.
Judge Flanagan has always been interested in the global judiciary, participating in the International Judicial Academy’s Richard May program at The Hague the Netherlands and their Human Rights Law Program in Strasbourg, France.