Larry P. Polansky, deputy state court administrator for Pennsylvania, has been named executive officer of the Disrict of Columbia courts.
The post of court executive, the highest ranking nonjudicial administrator in the D.C. court system, was created in 1971 as part of the D.C. Court Reorganization Act.
Polansky, 46, is a specialist in using computerized information systems for court management. He was selected for the D.C. job by the Joint Committee on Judicial Administration, which is chaired by Chief Judge Theodore R. Newman Jr., of the D.C. Court of Appeals. Polansky will assume his duties Jan. 2.
Chief Judge H. Carl Moultrie I, of the D.C. Superior Court; Superior Court judges Fred L. McIntyre and William S. Thompson, and Associate Appeals Court Judge George R. Gallagher also are members of the committee.
The court executive's job has been vacant for 18 months, following the resignation of Arnold M. Malech. Malech's tenure as the court system's first executive officer was marred by confrontations with other court personnel and by the reluctance of Harold H. Greene, who was hen chief judge of the Superior Court, to delegate authority centralized in the office of chief judge, according to knowledgeable court sources.
These observers anticipate, however, that Polansky will have a greater opportunity to significantly influence management of the Superior Court under Moultrie, who in his first six months as chief judge has clearly demonstrated his intention to share his administrative powers.
Is is also expected that Polansky will work closely with Newman regarding management needs of the Court of Appeals.
Polansky will report to the joint committee and the two chief judges. He will be paid $49,050 a year, the same as an associate judge of the Superior Court.
As court executive, Polansky will have a variety of adminstrative duties, including preparation of budgets, personnel management and supervision of general court operations.
In announcing Polansky's appointment last week, Newman emphasized Polansky's experience in court use of computer systems for information and scheduling purposes. Polansky was described by several sources familiar with his work as "pioneer" in the development of computer systems to improve court management.
In a telephone interview, Polansky said the District was one of the first court systems to use computers for court management. He said, however, that while the city courts have acquired sophisticated computer capabilites, the systems are not being used to bring the maximum benefit to the court.
From 1967 to 1976, Polansky served as chief deputy court administrator for operations and services for the Philadelphia court system, which has 103 local judges. There are 44 trial judges in D.C. Superior Court and nine judges in the Court of Appeals.
In the Philadelphia court system, Polansky designed and implemented a computer system to serve information and scheduling needs for courts, prosecutors, public defenders, probation officers and the jury selection board.
Since 1976, Polansky has been deputy state court administrator for Pennsylvania. His duties inlcluded budget supervision and planning and development of information technology.
Polansky has taught court administration and court planning at Temple University, where he earned a law degree, and has been a consultant to more than 10 court systems, including the D.C. Superior Court.
He is the author of various publications on the use of technology in court systems and has lectured extensively on data processing topics.