Judge Gael D. Wood

Presiding Circuit Judge Gael D. Wood recently was presented the Benjamin N. Cardozo Award for judicial courage and excellence.

Judge Wood, Washington, received the award during the 2014 meeting of the Missouri Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers in Branson.

Lisa Preddy, district public defender, presented the award which recognizes Judge Wood for his numerous contributions to the administration of justice in Franklin County including helping initiate a pioneer probation supervision program.

After the presentation, Franklin County Prosecuting Attorney Robert Parks and Preddy issued the following joint statement: “We are proud that Judge Wood has received this prestigious honor and are grateful for the leadership he’s shown as Presiding Judge of the 20th Judicial Circuit.”

The award is named after U.S. Supreme Court Justice Benjamin Cardozo and is not awarded every year.

Past recipients include Richard Callahan, U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of Missouri; Supreme Court Judge Laura Stith; and former Supreme Court Judges Michael Wolff and John Holstein.

Judge Wood is in his 14th year on the bench for the 20th Judicial Circuit which includes Franklin, Gasconade and Osage counties.