United States District Judge Richard Mills announced his retirement effective September 1, 2022. He has served as a Judge for 56 years.
Judge Mills was States Attorney of Cass County from 1960-1964, Circuit Judge of the Illinois Eighth Circuit Court from 1966-1976, Justice of the Illinois Appellate Court, Fourth District from 1976-1985, when President Ronald Reagan appointed him to the Federal Bench. He was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on July 19, 1985, his birthday.
Judge Mills received a Bachelor of Arts from Illinois College where he was a varsity debater and orator, his law degree from Mercer University where he was on the law review and graduated 4th in his class and a master of laws from the University of Virginia School of Law.
He is a Bronze Star veteran of the Korean War where he served with the 3rd Infantry Division, stayed in the U.S. Army Reserve and retired from the military with the rank of Colonel. Thereafter, he was appointed a Major General in the Illinois Militia by the late Governor James R. Thompson.
Judge Mills has sat by order of the Chief Justice of the United States on eight of the 13
U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeal around the country: in Pasadena, San Francisco, New York, Atlanta, New Orleans, Denver, Cincinnati, Portland, Seattle, Miami, Montgomery, AL and St. Paul, MN. He wrote his fair share of opinions and dispositions on each assignment.
He was the founding President of the Lincoln-Douglas American Inn of Court.
Judge Mills said of his over a half-century on the bench, “It has been a marvelous adventure and I cherish every moment of it”.