Judge Mary DeBoer
has announced her candidacy for the bench of Porter Circuit Court in the
2020 election cycle.
In November, Gov.
Eric Holcomb appointed DeBoer to serve as the judge of the Porter Circuit
Court after Judge Mary Harper retired leaving one year of her term to
Judge DeBoer was
sworn in effective Jan. 1.
from Western Michigan University with honors in 1989 with degrees in
criminal justice and political science. In 1993 she graduated from
Valparaiso University School of Law, then served as a deputy prosecuting
attorney in Starke and Porter counties for 13 years where she worked on
everything from juvenile cases to murder trials.
DeBoer was also
appointed to serve as the Magistrate of the Starke Circuit Court in 2005 and
2006. Since August 2011, DeBoer has presided over domestic relations and
probate matters in Porter County.
Although a member
of the Porter County judiciary for the past nearly nine years, DeBoer has
never previously run for political office. As Magistrate of Porter Superior
Court 1, she was not required to participate in elections to keep her
position. In order to accept the appointment as Porter Circuit Court Judge,
DeBoer left her post in Superior Court to assume the responsibilities of the
Circuit Court, including overseeing the Porter County Juvenile Services
Center as well as managing a full civil and criminal docket.
Judge DeBoer has spearheaded the implementation of the Guardianship Registry
in Porter County courts and has facilitated an award of grant money from the
Indiana Supreme Court so that Porter County could have its own Adult
Guardianship Program to provide services for more incapacitated adults in
Porter County. In 2018, DeBoer served as a co-leader from the judiciary to
organize a multi-disciplinary team to attend trainings to learn how to
better combat the opioid crisis in our county. In 2019, she again
coordinated a team of key leaders comprised of two judicial officers, the
prosecutor, defense attorneys, law enforcement, DCS, mental health providers
and members of community corrections in Porter County who have worked
together throughout the year to obtain $60,000 in grant money to use toward
expanding or implementing programs for opioid addicted litigants in our
Outside of the
office, DeBoer is an active member of the Valparaiso Noon Kiwanis where she
started a Backpack and Snacks Program to assist food-insecure children in
the Valparaiso Community Schools. She is also a member of United Way--Women
United in Porter County. As a hobby, DeBoer has participated in community
theatre throughout Northwest Indiana for the past 17 years performing in
over 40 productions in Valparaiso, Portage, Chesterton, Hammond, Michigan
City and Crown Point.