Moritz College of Law The Ohio State University
This Month @ Moritz

Hon. Carla Moore '77 Honored with College's Distinguished Jurist Award at Hooding Ceremony

Carla Moore
Dean Nancy Rogers presents the Distinguished Jurist Award to Judge Moore at the Hooding Ceremony

Judge Moore's many years on the bench have given her keen insight into the characteristics that make for an effective judge. Though intelligence and experience are important aspects to bring to the judiciary, she finds patience to be especially important. "When you have been on the bench for a while, there is a sense of having heard it all," she observes. "Yet, each litigant is entitled to present his case to a judge who will receive the evidence and the argument with an open mind."

Humility is also an essential characteristic of a proficient judge. "From the time you are elected or appointed to the bench, you are treated differently by the attorneys with whom you practiced and with whom you socialize," she notes. "The longer one serves on the bench, the more necessary it is that one remain centered, and keep in mind that the position is one of service, not privilege."

To this end, Judge Moore continually searches for ways to improve her ability to serve the people. Recently, she was one of twenty Ohio judges selected to be Science and Technology Fellows for The Advanced Science and Technology Adjudication Resource Center (ASTAR). This required her to complete 120 hours of advanced scientific education and commit to serve as a resource judge for five years. The participation has already proved beneficial. "I had been in the ASTAR program for scarcely six months before I was called on to consider a case involving reproductive medicine [the case is currently pending before the Supreme Court of Ohio]," she recalls. "This program has clearly enhanced my capability as a judge in the area of science and technology."

Supreme Court of Ohio Chief Justice Thomas J. Moyer '64 is the vice chair of ASTAR. "Judge Moore is one of our most committed ASTAR judges, a reflection of her reputation as an exemplary Ohio jurist," observes the chief justice.

Erin Moriarty '77 of CBS' 48 Hours, says, "I have known Judge Moore since 'Moore' was assigned a seat next to 'Moriarty' in Professor Clovis' first-year Contracts class in the fall of 1974. From that day on, we studied together, argued moot court together and shared so many personal accomplishments and disappointments. The traits and qualities that make me cherish her as a dear friend thirty years later are the same that make her such an outstanding jurist: she is both spiritual and grounded, open-minded with a great capacity to understand human frailties, and a person with a seemingly unlimited capacity to care for others — and it doesn't hurt that she introduced me to my husband [who was working with her at the Ohio Attorney General's office]."

Judge Carla Moore has found that her personal experiences best inform her work. From evaluating the truthfulness of a witness on the stand to deciding the best future path for an individual following a controversy, she says, "Life itself is the best preparation for being a successful jurist." For a life and career marked by integrity, honor and service, the college has given her the William K. Thomas Distinguished Jurist Award.

Those wishing to congratulate Judge Moore on her award can reach her at