Former Sangamon County State's Attorney Dan Wright took the oath as the newest Seventh Judicial Circuit Associate Judge on Friday. The oath was administered by Supreme Court Justice Lisa Holder White.
In his new role, Judge Wright joins a group of 10 associate circuit judges and will be assigned to the family law division.
Wright began his Sangamon County career in 2016 when he joined the State's Attorney's office as a felony assistant State's Attorney. Quickly climbing the ranks, he assumed the position of first assistant state's attorney in 2017. In 2018, Wright was appointed State's Attorney, succeeding John Milhiser, and successfully defended his position against Democratic challenger Mike Drake in 2020.
The appointment follows the passing of Associate Judge Matt Maurer earlier this year, creating a vacancy.
The selection process included six other candidates: Andrew Affrunti, Montgomery County state's attorney; Rex Gradeless; Abby L. Sgro; Ali Nicole Mikels; Kateah M. McMasters; and Lorelei G. Nickols. Judge Wright emerged as the chosen candidate in an October announcement by the Seventh Judicial Circuit.
Wright earned his undergraduate degree from Illinois College in Jacksonville and a J.D. from Saint Louis University School of Law. Before his tenure with Sangamon County, he was a partner at the Springfield firm of Brown, Hay & Stephens.