Formed in Washington, DC in January 1982, the Council for Court Excellence is a nonprofit, nonpartisan civic organization.
The Council works to improve the administration of justice in the local and federal courts and related agencies in the Washington metropolitan area.
The Council accomplishes this goal by:
- Identifying and promoting justice system reforms,
- Improving public access to justice, and
- Increasing public understanding and support of our justice system.
The Council is governed by a volunteer Board of Directors composed of members of the legal, business, civic, and judicial communities. The Council is unique in bringing together all of those communities in common purpose to address court reform and access to justice needs.
The Board accomplishes the work of the Council through direct participation in Council committees. The Council employs a small staff to assist the Board in meeting the objectives of the organization. Financial support comes from the members of the Board, businesses, law firms, individuals, foundations, and occasionally government.
The Council for Court Excellence has built a substantial record of success in the major justice system reform initiatives it has undertaken.
The Council has been the moving force behind adoption of the one day/one trial jury system in the DC Superior Court, modernization of trial jury and grand jury systems, reform of the District of Columbia probate laws and procedures, reform of the DC administrative adjudication system, improvement in court handling of child neglect and abuse cases, expansion of crime victim rights, proposing methods to speed resolution of criminal cases, and proposing methods to speed resolution of civil cases by the DC trial and appellate courts.
To improve the public’s access to justice and increase their understanding of our justice system, the Council over the years has published and distributed over 360,000 copies of plain-language booklets and other materials explaining a wide variety of court systems and legal issues.