Clanton named AOC Director

On November 3, Chief Justice Hugh Thompson announced that Cynthia H. Clanton has been chosen as the new director of Georgia’s Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC). Ms. Clanton, 54, was chosen from a field of 25 applicants to lead the office, which is responsible for providing a broad range of administrative, financial, legal, management and information technology services to Georgia’s courts and the judicial branch. The AOC answers to the Judicial Council, the policy-making body for the judiciary which is chaired by the Chief Justice and made up of judges from all classes of courts.

altMs. Clanton, an attorney who has served as Interim Director since May of this year, has nearly 30 years of experience working in court administration, operations management, and intergovernmental and legal affairs. Prior to becoming Interim Director, she served as General Counsel of the AOC since 2002, providing legal advice to the judiciary and overseeing all aspects of the department, including staff, budget, grants and projects.

A seven-member AOC Search Committee, chaired by Presiding Justice P. Harris Hines of the Georgia Supreme Court, has been working since June of this year to identify a new Director. After winnowing the number of applicants down to nine, the Committee conducted interviews before making its final choice. In a special session this morning, the Judicial Council of Georgia endorsed Ms. Clanton as the new AOC Director.  

“This position requires a skillful balance of serving the courts’ needs while maintaining excellent working relationships with both the executive and legislative branches,” Chief Justice Thompson said. “We are confident Ms. Clanton has the leadership skills necessary to bring the administration of our court system into the 21st century.”

Q&A with Cynthia

The Courts Journal sat down with new Director, Cynthia Clanton to ask a few questions:

CJ:  So, you are now Director of the Administrative Office of the Courts (after serving as Interim Director for 7 months), will it be hard to make the transition to being Director?

CC: I was deeply honored to be selected Director by the Judicial Council. Having served as the AOC’s legal counsel for 15 years, I was familiar with our resources and the day to day needs of our judicial clients. After serving as interim director, being selected as Director of the AOC brought clarity to the position and allows the AOC to move forward with the initiatives started several months ago.
CJ:  You have been emphasizing in your speeches as Interim that the AOC is a service organization.  Is that a change in how the AOC will operate?

CC:  No, as our statutory charge always described the AOC as the service agency for the Judicial Council. Recently, we refocused on providing competent, responsive, and efficient administrative services to the judiciary, upon their request. That never changes.
CJ:  Where do you want the AOC to be in 6 months?

CC:  In addition to continuing to improve the AOC’s collaboration and communication with our clients, the Legislative Branch, and the Executive Branch, we are open to new opportunities to serve as presented by the Judicial Council’s strategic plan and our clients. I am looking forward to serving the judiciary in the months to come.

Contact AOC

Administrative Office of the Courts 244 Washington Street, SW Suite 300 Atlanta, GA  30334

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