Kendall County judge retiring from bench

Kendall County Judge Melissa S. Barnhart is retiring from the bench.

“It has been an honor and a privilege to serve the people of the 23rd Circuit for the past 13 years,” Barnhart said. “I greatly appreciate the trust people placed in me throughout my legal career.”

A replacement will be appointed by the Illinois Supreme Court, according to Kendall County Court Administrator Marci Vose.

Barnhart was first appointed as an associate judge in the 16th Judicial Circuit assigned to DeKalb County. Upon the creation of the 23rd Judicial Circuit she continued her judicial career in Kendall County.

Barnhart was elected as a circuit judge in 2012. Prior to becoming a judge, she served as an assistant state’s attorney for Kendall County State’s Attorney Dallas Ingemunson. She then went into private practice until her appointment to the bench.

“Judge Barnhart has served the citizens of Kendall County as a solid state’s attorney and a great judge,” retired Judge Timothy McCann said. “Her passion for justice will be missed.”

Kendall County Presiding Judge Robert Pilmer said he has worked with Barnhart for more than 25 years.

“She is one of the finest persons that I know and I’ve always appreciated her insight, knowledge and thoughtfulness in all types of situations,” Pilmer said.

“Her experience is irreplaceable,” Pilmer said. “She contributes so much to the judiciary on a daily basis, and her presence will be greatly missed.”