News Item
Minnesota Court of Appeals celebrates 40th anniversary

Posted: Tuesday, September 26, 2023


The Minnesota Court of Appeals is celebrating its 40th anniversary with a host of events to commemorate the occasion and educate the public about the court.

Thursday, Oct. 5: Court of Appeals Reunion, 4-7 p.m., Landmark Center

Past and present Court of Appeals staff, clerks and judges will gather to share memories about the court.

Tuesday, Oct. 17: Oral Arguments Reenactment, 1-2:30 p.m., Landmark Center (Ramsey County Courtroom)

Minnesota Court of Appeals Chief Judge Susan Segal, and fellow Court of Appeals Judges Lucinda Jesson (retired) and Francis Connolly, will hear a reenactment of the very first case argued before the Court of Appeals, Evans v. Blesi. Cindy Lehr, Minnesota Court of Appeals chief attorney, will moderate the event and retired Judge Marianne Short and attorney Mark Bradford will argue the case.

Thursday, Nov. 2: 40th Anniversary Symposium, 12:45-7 p.m., University of St. Thomas Law School

  • 1:10 p.m.—Star Tribune columnist Lori Sturdevant will speak about the campaign to create the Court of Appeals
  • 1:45 p.m.—A panel discussion about the future of the Court of Appeals
  •  2:40 p.m.—A panel discussion about the role of state appellate courts and state constitutions, featuring:
    • Chief Justice Natalie Hudson, Minnesota Supreme Court
    • Professor Elizabeth Bentley, University of Minnesota Law School
    • Professor John Bessler, University of Baltimore Law School
    • Chief Judge Erin Lagesen, Oregon Court of Appeals
  • Keynote speech on intermediate courts of appeal and the rule of law by Don Verrilli, former United States Solicitor General

Tuesday, Nov. 21—Traveling Oral Arguments, Waseca High School

A three-judge panel from the Court of Appeals will hear oral arguments in front of a student audience.

ONLINE: Minnesota State Law Library Court of Appeals 40th Anniversary

This digital display features a complete history of the Court of Appeals, its judges, oral history videos, and Law in Action videos. 

As part of its 40th anniversary festivities, the Court of Appeals also attended celebratory events in Steele, Ottertail, and St. Louis counties.

The Minnesota Court of Appeals began operating in November 1983. Today, it hears roughly 2,000 appeals each year from district court decisions and administrative agencies, with the exception of first-degree murder, tax, and worker’s compensation cases. Three-judge panels hear cases in St. Paul’s Minnesota Judicial Center, in courtrooms around the state, and now via livestreaming. More information about Minnesota’s Court of Appeals can be found on the Court of Appeals webpage.