Kevin Lyons Assuming Judicial Seat- Who Assumes State's Attorney's Office?

By Maggie Vespa

July 5, 2011 Updated Jul 5, 2011 at 10:46 PM CDT

It looks to be a veritable shuffling of the judicial deck in Central lllinois.

Tuesday longtime Peoria County State's Attorney Kevin Lyons was tapped as the 10th judicial circuit's newest judge.

He will fill the seat vacated by Judge Richard Grawey last year.

But who will fill his spot as State's Attorney?

'From advocate to umpire.'

That's how 23 year Peoria County State's Attorney Kevin Lyons is describing his newest gig, as a judge in Illinois' 10th judicial circuit.

"I like that it's a challenge and something that a lot of lawyers seek their whole career," he said.

After an extensive screening process, Illinois Supreme Court Chief Justice Thomas Kilbride recommended Lyons for the job. His appointment was announced Tuesday.

Lyons call the move bittersweet.

"I hope the public understands that this office really has been the place that I have wanted to cultivate and make a difference in the world."

But as one hole is filled, another is created.

The decision of who will replace Lyons as Peoria County State's Attorney now lies in the hands of County Board Chairman Tom O'Neill.

"We've already had a few people inquire about it, and out of those three we've narrowed it down to two, and I'm going to talk to the county board," he said.

O'Neill declined to name the final two.

He says among other things, Lyon's input will carry weight in his decision.

On that point, Lyons doesn't mince words.

His pick- Peoria attorney Gerry Brady.

"Gerry's a former prosecutor, a gentleman's lawyer, a prince of a person, and has good management skills," said Lyons.

Our attempts to reach Brady were unsuccessful.

Lyons will be sworn in as judge on August 1st, maintaining his role as state's attorney until that time.

As to who will take the wheel from there- O'Neill says the county board will vote on his recommendation at its next meeting on July 14th.

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