As chief information officer for the Minnesota Fourth Judicial District, John Erar says he is a great believer in listening to the needs of judges and other people his department serves.
So, when the state court system began five years ago moving from paper-based case filing to one entirely digital, Fourth District Judge Peter Cahill wasn’t surprised that Erar was in the thick of helping accomplish the changeover.
“From the moment John joined as the Fourth Judicial District CIO, he has pushed us to change business practices to better serve the citizens of Hennepin County,” Cahill said. “John played a key role in suggesting new technology, tweaking the electronic systems that were put in place to make them more user-friendly, and most importantly, listening to his fellow court employees when they made suggestions to change processes or technologies to assist us in being more efficient.
“At first, it was a terribly cumbersome process for the judges, but John kept working with his staff to improve it,” said Cahill, who nominated Erar as a 2018 Unsung Hero. “Now, it is simplified to the point where it is easy to use, even for the most tech-challenged judicial officers.”