Will County associate judge enters race for circuit post
Will County Associate Judge Ben Braun has his sights set on a new seat: circuit judge.
“I look forward to seeing you on the campaign trail as well as at the polls for the primary election of March of 2018 and the general election in November of 2018,” Braun says in a YouTube video addressing potential voters.
Circuit Judge Daniel Rozak retired earlier this year, and Associate Judge Rick Mason was appointed to fill the seat until 2018, he is not seeking election, My Suburban Life reported.
Braun has resided in Will County for 27 years, served as an associate judge for 11 years and practiced law in the county for almost two decades, according to his video.
The former Republican committeeman also was a partner in the Joliet law firm of Stefanich, McGarry, Wols, Okrei and Braun before running his own firm.
According to Braun's website, he is one of the county’s highest-rated judges, with an approval rating above 95 percent from the lawyers who practice before him, including prosecutors, defense attorneys and the civil practice bar.
Some of Braun’s courtroom assignments have included felony bond, domestic violence and orders of protection, DUI and misdemeanor, family law division hearing divorce and child custody trials, paternity, housing and ordinance code violations, and landlord-tenant matters, his website noted.
“The circuit court is one of Will County’s essential government institutions and Will County’s 16 circuit court judges typically hear the higher-profile cases, supervise other judges, and both select and decide the retention of the county’s 20 associate judges,” Braun told My Suburban Life. “I would be honored to have the vote of the people of Will County.”
Braun regularly puts on programs in Will County schools and community organizations to spread awareness about alcohol and drug abuse, the legal system and current issues in the law, his website said. He also coached youth baseball for eight years.
Braun has also served on a some local boards, including as vice president of his religious congregation’s board and as president and member of the board of Lifeworks Chemical Dependency Centers, a Joliet and Bolingbrook program that provided outpatient drug and alcohol treatment to Will County.
He also was on the Will County Legal Assistance Program Board, later becoming the board's "Pro Bono Attorney of the Year," according to his website.
A University of Illinois graduate, Braun specialized in family law and appellate work and has a track record of arguing more than 40 cases in the appellate courts of Illinois.
Braun has two children in college and has been married to his wife, Wendy, for 23 years.