001: A Conversation with Judge Geoffrey Gaither
The Honorable Geoffrey A. Gaither is the Senior Magistrate at the Marion County Juvenile Court in Indianapolis, Indiana. He has served there since 1995. His jurisdiction has included delinquencies, child welfare issues, paternities, guardianships, adoption-related matters, child support and custody cases.
Community involvement is extremely important to Judge Gaither. He is a past and present adjunct professor at IUPUI and Martin University, youth mentor, motivational speaker, Marion County Juvenile Court representative at the Undoing Racism workshops, created the “Is Indianapolis Another Ferguson?” forum and radio, TV, print and podcast legal analyst. He has been recognized many times locally and nationally for his community service and dedication to children and families. Judge Gaither developed a much-needed program entitled The Young Women’s Empowerment Conference Series benefiting young women on probation or otherwise involved in the juvenile justice system. He also created the Male Mentoring Conference which is a young men’s focused event that emphasizes the value of mentorship to educational and career success. Judge Gaither has also hosted the 100 Black Men of Indianapolis’ Beautillion Militaire “Know Your Legal Rights” session several times and moderated public discussions on community issues.
The Robert F. Kennedy National Resource Center for Juvenile Justice invited Judge Gaither to serve on its Dual Status Youth Practice Network in Spring 2016. This prestigious organization focuses on children with delinquency, neglect, abuse and/or dependency cases at the same time. Judge Gaither now leads the Dual Status Court in Indianapolis, Indiana.
Inspiring and influencing youth through education is important to Judge Gaither. He helped develop the Urban Initiative Hi5 Rallies at local schools empowering young people to take ownership of their educational careers. Male volunteers form two lines at the school’s entrance and high five students at the start of the school day.
Judge Gaither is Hoosier born and raised in Indianapolis, Indiana. He is a proud public school graduate. Judge Gaither earned his Bachelor of Urban Planning degree from the University of Cincinnati and then later received his Juris Doctor degree with honors from Howard University. Judge Gaither was an editor and published author on the Howard Law Journal. After graduation, he clerked for the District of Columbia Court of Appeals, is a former Marion County deputy prosecutor, deputy public defender and was in private practice before being sworn onto the bench.
Judge Gaither is a member of Kappa Alpha Psi, Inc. and is also married to Attorney KiKi Gaither, former co-host of WTLC AM 1310’s “Legally Speaking.” They have 3 sons: Jordan, Taylor and Austin and are members of Phillips Temple CME Church.