DES MOINES – Last Tuesday, the Iowa Supreme Court announced the initial steps towards creating the Chief Justice Mark S. Cady Learning Center on the first floor of the Judicial Branch Building, 1111 East Court Avenue, Des Moines. Chief Justice Cady passed away unexpectedly, Friday, Nov. 15.
Chief Justice Cady was a longtime advocate for civics education, serving on the iCivics Board of Directors, initiating the Iowa Supreme Court court-on-the-road program to bring oral arguments to Iowa communities, traveling around the state to meet with Iowa students to discuss the role of the judicial branch of government, and welcoming civic groups to the Iowa Judicial Branch Building. One of Chief Justice Cady’s goals was to create an interactive learning center for all Iowans in the judicial branch building.
The supreme court is working with students in the Iowa State University Graphic Design, Industrial Design, and Interior Design programs to design the experiential learning center. The learning center will have interactive exhibits to show the process of a case through Iowa’s court system, highlight Iowa’s proud civil rights history, and show the importance of fair and impartial courts.
Each year law clerks lead thousands of Iowa students on tours of the judicial branch building. Frequently, a justice or court of appeals judge will also meet with the students and answer questions. The learning center will enhance the many yearly school tours and be open to all Iowans and visitors from around the world who want to learn more about the Iowa court system.