Jean Atkin, OJMA Trustee

Vicky Unger, OJMA Executive Director

Paula Hannaford-Agor receives 2014 Ohio Jury Management Association Award of Excellence

Columbus, Ohio (April 10, 2014) -- The 2014 Ohio Jury Management Association (OJMA) Award of Excellence was presented to Paula Hannaford-Agor, the director of NCSC's Center for Jury Studies, at the OJMA Annual meeting in Columbus, Ohio.

The Ohio Jury Management Association was created in March 2000 following a 1999 statewide Jury Service Conference organized by the Ohio State Bar Foundation.  The Ohio State Bar Foundation continues to support OJMA by providing office space and other services.  This year, as well as the past three years, OJMA has partnered with The Supreme Court of Ohio Judicial College to present the annual conference. 

The mission of OJMA is to promote and enhance jury service through excellent jury management.  Membership in OJMA is open to anyone interested in promoting and enhancing jury service through excellent jury management. The majority of members are judges, jury commissioners, bailiffs, court administrators, and other court personnel.   

The OJMA Trustees created this annual award to recognize the efforts and accomplishments of individuals and/or organizations who have contributed in an exemplary way to the mission of OJMA.  The Center for Jury Studies has been an important part of OJMA since the inception of the association.  Former Center for Jury Studies Director G. Thomas Munsterman took part in the 1999 statewide jury service conference, participated in a number of annual OJMA conferences and was the recipient of the 2003 OJMA Award of Excellence.  

The OJMA Trustees unanimously selected Paula Hannaford-Agor as the 2014 recipient of the Award of Excellence. Paula has been involved with jury related endeavors for many years. She was appointed as the Director of the Center for Jury Studies for the National Center for State Courts in January 2006.  She previously held several research positions at the National Center for State Courts, focusing upon jury-related subjects.  Paula is a nationally recognized expert on jury system management and jury trial procedure.  She conducts research on important jury issues and provides technical assistance and education to courts and court personnel on the topics of jury system management and trial procedures, civil litigation, and complex and mass tort litigation.

Paula has been instrumental in the development of the Jury Managers’ Toolbox.  This online diagnostic tool, which is used by several Ohio trial courts, helps judges, court administrators and jury management personnel assess the effectiveness of their jury operations and guide improvements. 

Paula has authored or contributed to numerous books and articles on the American jury.  These publications are a valuable resource to not only judges and court personnel but also to those within the general public or academic circles to gain increased knowledge and understanding about critical aspects of the justice system.

Paula has been a dynamic supporter of the Ohio Jury Management Association for many years.  She has been a visible and active participant in numerous OJMA conferences.  She has frequently presented keynote sessions on important current topics impacting trial courts and trial jurors.  She has ably moderated panels of jurors, drawing out their experiences and opinions in a way that educates the audience about addressing the needs of individuals summoned for jury service.   Taking the time from her very busy schedule to travel to Ohio and participate in the OJMA conference lends national credibility to the work of the Ohio Jury Management Association.

By the research conducted, the books and articles published, the technical assistance rendered and the education presented, Paula has contributed significantly to the development of policies, procedures, laws and/or rules that have had a tremendously positive impact upon the jury system, not only in Ohio but also nationally.

In summary, Paula Hannaford-Agor personifies the mission statement of the Ohio Jury Management Association "to promote and enhance jury service through excellent jury management."   She is most deserving of the 2014 Ohio Jury Management Association Award of Excellence.


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