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Five Minnesota Judicial Branch employees earn awards for workplace excellence

Posted: Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Five distinguished Minnesota Judicial Branch employees from across Minnesota were honored for their professional talents and contributions to the teams and workplaces they serve at the recent virtual Minnesota Association for Court Management (MACM) conference:
  • Dr. Katheryn Cranbrook of Hennepin County – Distinguished Service Award
  • Sheldon Clark of the Tenth Judicial District – Champion of Change Award
  • Jason Drabek of Hennepin County –  Early Career Excellence Award
  • Marianne Setala of Anoka County – Pandemic Hero Award
  • Kristine Maiers of Freeborn County – Lifetime Achievement Award
Dr. Katheryn Cranbrook, Hennepin County Chief Forensic Psychologist in the Fourth Judicial District, received the 2020 Distinguished Service Award. The Award is given to individuals who have a record of outstanding service to the community and courts, and demonstrate leadership by improving the administration of justice and delivery of public service through the application of modern management techniques.
Dr. Cranbrook is a highly effective leader and a catalyst for change. She is a member of various committees and workgroups, and collaborates with partner agencies, to ensure that the justice system understands the importance of mental health awareness. Dr. Cranbrook’s collaborative approach to developing and implementing on call, rapid turnaround evaluations of in-custody and out-of-custody misdemeanant defendants undergoing Rule 20/competence evaluations has improved the efficiency and volume of court-ordered assessments. She is regularly called upon to train counties and district courts regarding the use of Rule 20s, has coordinated trainings with the St. Peter Security Hospital, and started a successful, nationally-recognized post-doctoral fellowship program.
Sheldon Clark, Deputy District Administrator in the Tenth Judicial District, was honored as the 2020 Champion of Change. The Champion of Change fosters collaboration to promote innovation by embracing opportunities to utilize technology and other resources to increase efficiencies and productivity in the work place.
Clark immediately stepped into a new role at the start of the pandemic to lead the change that was required to ensure access to justice during an uncertain time. His talent and leadership in process development and change management, with a focus on technology, training, and communication, has been beneficial to all judges and staff in the District. He has served in an integral role as the Tenth Judicial District transitioned to remote technologies to ensure access to court services and virtual courtroom settings during the pandemic. Clark has served on the statewide Pandemic Response Team, and is tireless in his efforts to consistently seek new opportunities to ensure the courts are able to provide access to justice.
Jason Drabek, a Hennepin County Judicial IT Supervisor II in the Fourth Judicial District, was recognized with the 2020 Early Career Excellence Award. The Award recognizes a person who demonstrates achievement in the courts through obtaining a high level of knowledge in a short amount of time, is a quick learner and a valuable resource to others, is dependable and consistent while working to achieve success in a local court or for the Minnesota Judicial Branch, and demonstrates outstanding leadership by considering stakeholders when making decisions.
Drabek has demonstrated the very best qualities of early career excellence in the court with his willingness to promote collaboration and transparency in the process. He has been a leader in a number of technology initiatives that include eCheck-In and the use of remote video conferencing solutions for court hearings. Drabek also served on the statewide remote hearing technology committee, where he recommended technology solutions that add business and resource efficiencies and navigate the COVID-19 environment.
Marianne Setala, Anoka County Court Operations Manager in the Tenth Judicial District, was recognized with the 2020 Pandemic Hero Award for her excellence and vigilant dedication to the court and her team during the pandemic.
Setala has patiently guided her team during this challenging time of a global pandemic, and provided them with tools and resources needed to navigate uncertainty, ensure access to court services by stakeholders and customers, and keep staff safe and healthy. Her refined understanding of the Anoka County calendar plan played a critical role in rearranging the current calendar plan to best utilize resources to efficiently and safely hear backlogged cases. Her commitment to her staff has created an office atmosphere that allowed them to feel safe during these trying times.
Kristine Maiers, Freeborn County Court Operations Manager with the Third Judicial District, received the 2020 Lifetime Achievement Award. The Award recognizes an individual for his or her many contributions to the court management profession, and for years of service to the court.
Maiers is a passionate, dedicated leader whose knowledge and experience is valued and sought after. She makes collaboration a core part of her role and always keeps what is best for the entire Third Judicial District at the forefront of her work. In addition to her role as Court Operations Manager, Maiers has served on various state and district teams focused on improving the customer experience, enhancing the court’s operations and financial oversight, improving the quality of data, protecting the security of court documents and records, and supporting staff training and skills development. In the words of her colleagues, Maiers sees the importance of every role someone plays within the Minnesota Judicial Branch and does all that she can to empower others to succeed.
About the Minnesota Association for Court Management
The Minnesota Association for Court Management (MACM) has more than 350 members who are court leaders throughout Minnesota. MACM is committed to the enrichment of its members through professional growth and development opportunities, promoting advancements and innovation in court administration, and partnering with other professionals working to improve the justice system in Minnesota.