MEET JUDGE LOU TROSCH
Judge Louis A. Trosch, Jr., is a District Court Judge in the 26th Judicial District in Mecklenburg County, North Carolina. He and his wife, Cathie Trosch, have two children, Lou and Pressley. After graduating from West Charlotte High School, Judge Trosch received a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Washington & Lee University in 1988, Magna Cum Laude, and his Juris Doctor in 1992 from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Law, where he graduated Order of the Coif. He has served as District Court Judge in the Juvenile and Family Courts since 1999. Prior to the bench Judge Trosch worked first as an assistant public defender and then as an attorney at the Children’s Law Center. Subsequently, he practiced as a litigator with the law firm of Conrad, Trosch & Kemmy, PA, while also serving as the firm’s Managing Attorney. In July of 2010 Judge Trosch was the first Judge in North Carolina to be certified by the National Association of Counsel for Children as a Child Welfare Law Specialist.
During his tenure on the bench Judge Trosch has served in all of the varied District Courts with distinction. Awarded the NC Distinguished Jurist Award in October 2011 by the NC District Court Judges’ Association, he has proven as adept at handling an equitable distribution matter as he is with hearing a DWI trial. Beginning in 2002 Judge Trosch was selected to oversee the 26th Judicial District’s Juvenile Courts, a position he maintained until 2008. He continues to lead many collaborative reform efforts underway in Mecklenburg County. In recognition of this cooperative approach, in May of 2012 Judge Trosch was presented with the Lucille P. Giles Volunteerism Award by Florence Crittendon Services for his collaborative work on behalf of children and families. Such initiatives include: a permanency mediation program in dependency court that has become a state and national model; a Truancy Court Program held in selected elementary and middle schools for at risk youth; a Youth Treatment Court for juvenile offenders with substance abuse issues; a Drug Court Program for parents, whose children have been placed into the custody of the Department of Social Services; the development and implementation of a Juvenile Court automated data system (implemented statewide as J-WISE); a geo-district system of case assignment to improve court efficiency and teamwork among agency representatives; an Arts and Science Collaborative designed to involve court involved youth in positive extracurricular activities and better coordination of multi-system and community collaborative efforts in Mecklenburg County.
In fact, Judge Trosch has become a nationally recognized expert regarding collaboration between court systems and various community groups, having traveled across the United States to speak on this topic. He has twice testified before Congress. First, he appeared before the Senate Finance Committee in July, 2011 regarding the impact of the federally funded Court Improvement Program, which fosters collaboration and spreads best practices among Juvenile Dependency Courts. In March of 2012 Judge Trosch returned to Washington and testified at a special roundtable briefing surrounding trauma informed justice and the Defending Childhood Initiative. Further, in October, 2011 Judge Trosch again traveled to Washington, DC to participate with a team of local officials in the Center for Juvenile Justice Reform’s Certificate Program for Public Sector Leaders to plan a multi-systems approach to child welfare issues.
Judge Trosch is active in the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges (NCJFCJ), and was appointed to their Board of Trustees in July 2008. He has Co-Chaired the Resource Development Committee and the Permanency Planning for Children Department’s Advisory Committee and has served on the NCJFCJ Diversity, Legislative, and Finance Committees. He also serves on the National Steering Committee for the Courts Catalyzing Change Project, which is designed to reduce the overrepresentation of children of color in abuse and neglect courts. Locally he served as his Model Court’s Lead Judge from 2002 until 2008. Judge Trosch has spoken across the nation about the impact of implicit bias in Juvenile Court Systems. He also participated in the NCASA Inclusiveness and Outreach Committee and previously consulted with the National Center for State Courts for that organization’s Implicit Bias Project. Not only does Judge Trosch participate in these important national initiatives, but he brings many lessons learned and best practices back home to North Carolina for local and statewide implementation. For example, Judge Trosch serves on the North Carolina Commission on Racial Disparities in the Criminal Justice System. Locally, he Co-Chairs Mecklenburg County’s Race Matters for Juvenile Justice Initiative, which is dedicated to ending disparate outcomes for children in the 26th Judicial District. Under his leadership, RMJJ has become a model for change for communities across the nation.
Also active in his local community and the Mecklenburg County Bar (MCB), Judge Trosch just joined the MCB Board of Trustees Class of 2018. He also currently serves on the Diversity and Inclusion Committee, Co-Chaired the Bench Bar and Community Sub-Committee in 2014/2015, and is a member of the Juvenile Law Section. He previously Chaired the Institute for Social Capital, a partnership between the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, local business leaders, and child welfare agencies, from 2006 through 2011; has served on the Board of the Mecklenburg Citizens for Public Education; sat on the Steering Committee for the System of Care Initiative (MeckCares) in conjunction with the Area Mental Health Authority; has Co-Chaired the Mecklenburg County Management Information System Sub-Committee; Co-Chaired the Dependency Mediation Committee; participated in the United Agenda for Children; and served on the North Carolina Bar Association’s 4ALL Task Force, a statewide effort to make legal services available to citizens living in poverty. Recognizing Judge Trosch’s ongoing commitment to improving our justice system, Governor Pat McCrory recently appointed Judge Trosch to the Juvenile Justice Planning Committee of the Governor’s Crime Commission in 2015.