Rep. Chris Taylor to Replace Karofsky as Dane County Judge
Rep. Chris Taylor in her Capitol office. (Image via Facebook)

Her new position on the bench begins Aug. 1.

Gov. Tony Evers has appointed Rep. Chris Taylor to the Dane County Circuit Court. 

The Democratic lawmaker from Madison will fill a vacancy on the court as Judge Jill Karofsky heads to the Wisconsin Supreme Court. Karofsky was elected to the Wisconsin Supreme Court in the April 7 election. Taylor’s new role as Dane County judge begins Aug. 1.

“Chris Taylor has devoted her life to fighting for people’s legal rights, having worked as an attorney in private practice, a nonprofit leader, and most recently in the Wisconsin Legislature,” Evers said. “This passion for justice and the law will make her an excellent addition to the Dane County Circuit Court.”

Taylor, who was thought by many political insiders to be the successor to Sen. Fred Risser, surprised many when she and Risser simultaneously announced at the end of March that they would not be seeking reelection. 

“I am deeply honored by this appointment and thank Governor Evers for this opportunity to serve my community as a Dane County Circuit Court judge,” said Taylor. “It is more critical than ever that the judicial branch ensure equal access to justice for all in an impartial, independent forum. As a judge, I will use my life-time experiences of working for fairness and equity to help accomplish that result.”

In announcing her decision to leave legislative life, Taylor said, who was first elected in 2011, said “representing the people of my community has been one of the greatest honors of my life.”

“I tried never to shy away from important, albeit controversial, issues while vocally advocating for the people of my community, and the progressive values and traditions that built our great state,” said Taylor when announcing her departure from the legislature.

Before entering the Legislature, Taylor was the public policy director for Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin and Planned Parenthood Advocates of Wisconsin. Taylor was in private practice from 1996 to 2003, where she focused on family law and civil litigation.

“Chris Taylor’s experience as an attorney and a legislator make her uniquely qualified to be a circuit court judge,” said Judge Karofsky. “She understands how laws are created and how they impact real people. She will be a tremendous asset to the Dane County bench.”