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For immediate release: July 16, 2009
For more information contact:
Winnie Comfort or Tammy Kendig
609-292-9580

Collins Ijoma, Trial Court Administrator for the Essex Vicinage of the New Jersey Judiciary, Wins Prestigious National Award

Collins Ijoma has been awarded the 2009 Award of Merit by the National Association for Court Management (NACM). The announcement was made today by Judge Glenn A. Grant, acting administrative director of the courts.

The award is presented annually to an individual who has demonstrated leadership and excellence and whose work exemplifies a progressive and proficient approach to court management.

"Having worked with Collins for more than 10 years, I can say with confidence that this award is much-deserved recognition for his talent, dedication, and extraordinary leadership," said Grant, acting administrative director of the courts and a former presiding judge in the Essex Vicinage.

"We are very proud of Collins and grateful for his enormous contributions to the Essex Vicinage and to the Judiciary. He is an inspirational leader who has helped bring the New Jersey Judiciary to national prominence," said Assignment Judge Patricia K. Costello.

Ijoma began his Judiciary career in 1983 as manager of the finance division for the Essex Vicinage, New Jersey's largest trial court. His role was later expanded to include oversight of human resources. He played an integral role in helping the Essex Vicinage move from a county court system into the statewide unified Judiciary in 1995. He was named assistant trial court administrator in 1990 and trial court administrator in 1995.

NACM is a professional organization dedicated to providing court managers with opportunities to improve their courts and their court management skills. NACM members participate in leadership training and other educational opportunities and work together to develop strategies for improving leadership in the courts, educate the public about the role and the importance of the courts, and enhance public access to the courts. Ijoma joined NACM in 1989, serving as a board member in 2000 and as president from 2004-2005.

Ijoma is a fellow of the National Center for State Courts' Institute for Court Management, and in 2007, he received the prestigious Star Award for excellence for his leadership role in that organization. While in the Essex Vicinage, Ijoma has led several important initiatives, including the development of a vicinage-wide newsletter, an Office of the Ombudsman, and several technology initiatives.

"I am very proud to be a member of NACM and even prouder to receive this award," said Ijoma. "New Jersey has the finest court system in the nation, and I want to thank all of my colleagues, both judges and staff, who work together to ensure that the people of New Jersey receive high quality justice in our courts. We have earned this award together."

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