The mission of the National Center for State Courts is to IMPROVE THE ADMINISTRATION OF JUSTICE through LEADERSHIP and SERVICE to state courts, and courts around the world.
The National Center continues to be the preeminent judicial reform organization in the United States.
The National Center will continue to be the national and global leader in helping courts improve the administration of justice. The National Center will:
The National Center will continue to be the premier provider of quality services meeting the current and future needs of the U.S. state court community, and courts around the world. The National Center will:
At the First National Conference of the Judiciary, held in Williamsburg, Virginia, in 1971, Chief Justice Warren Burger called for the creation of a central resource for the state courts—a "national center for state courts." The National Center for State Courts began operations that same year at the headquarters of the Federal Judicial Center in Washington, D.C., before moving to its permanent headquarters in Williamsburg in 1978.
The National Center for State Court's current mission, improving judicial administration through leadership and service to the state courts, springs logically from its original purpose as an information clearinghouse so that innovations in one court can benefit all courts. Initially, the National Center concentrated on helping courts to reduce backlogs and delay. This work included the publication of the groundbreaking Justice Delayed: The Pace of Litigation in Urban Trial Courts in 1978. The National Center also gave judges and court administrators a vital national perspective on court operations through its Court Statistics Project (started in 1978); the work of its Knowledge Information Service, which handled more than 1,000 requests for court-related information during its first year of operation (1979); and the holdings of its Library, the largest collection of court administration-related materials in the world.
Since its founding in 1971, the National Center for State Courts has played a key role in the development of court administration worldwide. Important National Center initiatives include