WI Tribal Judges Association
WI Tribal Judges Association

Current Events

36th Annual Coming Together of Peoples Conference, Save the Date, University of Wisconsin Law School
March 4-5, 2022
Location: University of Wisconsin Law School, Madison, WI
Save the Date... Read More

2022 Court Safety & Security Conference
March 24-25, 2022, register now
Location: Appleton, WI
Learn effective strategies and best practices for security planning, threat assessment and management.... Read More

Sovereignty Series: Family Law
Feb. 28, at 2 p.m. Central Time
Hear presentations on various subjects under federal Indian law and Indigenous Law from some of the top legal scholars . . .... Read More

Wisconsin Tribal Judges Association


Welcome to the Wisconsin Tribal Judges Association (WTJA). The WTJA was created in 1991 to serve the needs of tribal courts in each of the 11 federally recognized tribal nations in Wisconsin and encourage cooperation between tribal and state courts.

The WTJA is a non-profit membership organization consisting of judges and former judges from all 11 tribal nations in Wisconsin and governed by Articles of Incorporation and by-laws. The WTJA meets quarterly. Every two years, the WTJA elects a President, Vice-President, Secretary/Treasurer and Member at-large. Under its bylaws, each tribal court has one vote and each court pays annual dues.
The COVID-19 pandemic put up many challenges keeping us socially distant, but we found Zoom and other ways to continue meeting and staying connected with each other and our partners. Two big goals led to the creation of the WTJA: one, create ways for tribal judges from all of the tribal nations in Wisconsin to network, share ideas and best practices, and mentorship; and two, build partnerships with Wisconsin's state courts to build understanding and awareness of tribal courts. These important connections create the common ground where we build the government-to-government relationships between tribal and state justice systems.

Our relationships are growing thanks to good partners. Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice Jill Karofsky is our liaison to the state courts and the state Office of Judicial Education, and we have members serving on the State-Tribal Justice Form. www.wicourts.gov/courts/committees/tribal.htm

Each tribal court in Wisconsin is growing and evolving as tribal nations establish family courts, other courts of limited jurisdiction and healing to wellness courts. Take time to check out the story about Ho-Chunk (HCN) Healing to Wellness Court Coordinator Robert Mann to learn about why he was honored with the 2021 Bay dt ge:vik a’hanja – Wellness Court Advocate Award from the Tribal Law and Policy Institute. www.watcp.org/ho-chunk-healing-to-wellness-court-coordinator-robert-mann-receives-national-award/
I am honored to serve as the WTJA President. Thank you for your continued support. I look forward to the days when we are meeting in-person. Miigwech, Mi’iw.
Hon. Gwendolyn Topping, Associate Judge and WTJA President, 2021-2023
Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Tribal Court


WI Tribal Judges Association
WI Tribal Judges Association
WI Tribal Judges Association