The Chief Justice of the Minnesota Supreme Court is the administrative head of the Judicial Branch and responsible for its overall management. In 2005, following the transition to full state funding of the trial courts, the Judicial Branch instituted a new governance structure called the Judicial Council which is now the single administrative policy-making body for the Judicial Branch.
The State Court Administrator’s Office serves as staff to the Judicial Council and provides central administrative infrastructure services to the entire Judicial Branch including human resources, finance, legal research, information technology, communications, statewide program management, and research and evaluation services.
The chief justice leads the Supreme Court, which, besides handling the cases that come before the court, has the responsibility for regulating the practice of law and the promulgation of statewide rules of procedure and practice before all courts of the state. There are seven justices on the Supreme Court.
There is a chief judge of the Court of Appeals, appointed by the governor for a three-year term who serves as the head of that court. There are 19 judges on the Court of Appeals.
One district court judge in each judicial district is elected as a chief judge by the bench for a two-year term, and is responsible for management of the entire judicial district. The chief judge is assisted by a judicial district administrator. A county court administrator oversees the day-to-day operations in each county. There are 291 district court judges.