Kevin Burke has been a Minneapolis trial judge since 1984. He served four terms as chief judge of the Hennepin County, Minn., District Court, where he instituted social-science studies examining--and reforms improving--procedural fairness. Burke co-authored the American Judges Association's white paper on procedural fairness in 2007, and he co-authored the American Judges Association's white paper, "Minding the Court: Enhancing the Decision Making Process."
A GOVERNING Public Official of the Year in 2004, Burke received the William H. Rehnquist Award from the National Center for State Courts in 2003, an award presented annually to the state judge who most exemplifies the highest level of judicial excellence, integrity, fairness and professional ethics. He has received many other awards, including Trial Judge of the Year from the Minnesota chapter of the American Board of Trial Advocates in 2005; the Distinguished Service Award from the National Center for State Courts in 2002; and the Director's Community Leadership Award from the FBI in 1997. The magazine Politics in Minnesota named him one of the most influential lawyers in the state's history.
Burke currently serves on the board of the Institute for the Advancement of the American Legal System, has served on the board of the National Center for State Courts and the American Judicature Society, and is the immediate past president of the American Judges Association. He teaches at the University of Minnesota Law School and at the University of St. Thomas Law School.