Judge Zel M. Fischer to be honored by The Missouri Bar
Judge Zel M. Fischer of the Supreme Court of Missouri has been chosen to receive this year’s Theodore McMillian Judicial Excellence Award from The Missouri Bar.
Judge Zel M. Fischer of the Supreme Court of Missouri has been chosen to receive this year’s Theodore McMillian Judicial Excellence Award from The Missouri Bar. The award will be presented Sept. 19 at the Judicial Conference Legislative Awards Breakfast during the Annual Meeting in Branson.
The Theodore McMillian Judicial Excellence Award is annually bestowed upon judges who set an example of judicial excellence by leadership in the advancement of justice, provide outstanding public and community service to the people of Missouri, and who are persons of the highest character, integrity and honor who inspire other members of the judiciary to similar noble purpose. In June, Fischer completed a two-year term as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Missouri during which time he served on the board of directors of the Conference of Chief Justices. He also visited communities across the state to speak to citizens through their local chambers of commerce, rotary clubs and other civic groups about Missouri’s judicial branch.
“Judge Fischer tirelessly traveled the state to help educate citizens on how Missouri’s courts work efficiently on their behalf,” said Ray Williams, 2018-19 Missouri Bar president. “He also took time to speak with lawyers through local events as well as educational programs, keeping them up to date on Missouri’s courts and the law in order to help them better serve their clients.“
Fischer was appointed to the Supreme Court of Missouri in 2008 and retained by the voters at the November 2010 general election for a 12-year term. Prior to becoming a judge on the state’s highest court, Fischer was a trial judge and trial lawyer in northwest Missouri, where he was born and raised and still resides today.
Fischer is an ASTAR/NCSI Fellow, which is a select group of judges from around the country who have special training and education to preside over complex cases involving difficult science and technology issues. He also serves as president of the National Courts and Sciences Institute, a nonprofit organization dedicated to training judges in science.
Fischer is a frequent lecturer to judges and lawyers regarding the intersection of science and the law as well as constitutional issues and professional ethics. He is also actively involved in presenting constitutional forums at high schools, colleges and universities, where he impresses upon the students the prominent importance of protecting the rights guaranteed by the Constitution.