North Dakota Law

Updates from the University of North Dakota School of Law.

Judge Cruff ’94 to lead mental health initiative

District Court Judge Brad Cruff, who is chambered in Wahpeton, was one of 15 judges in the United States chosen to participate in the Judges and Psychiatrists Leadership Initiative.

The Leadership Initiative pairs a trial court judge with a psychiatrist from the same state and provides them intensive training on how to effectively deal with individuals with behavioral health needs who come into the justice system.  Individuals with behavioral health needs includes those with a mental illness, addiction or substance use issue.

For this training, he was paired with Dr. Rose Julius, who serves as the Medical Director of the Northeast Human Service Center.  The Northeast Human Service Center is located in Grand Forks.  The training was held September 10-12 in Washington, D.C.

After completing their training, Judge Cruff and Dr. Julius will co-teach this subject to all state court judges in North Dakota.

This training was made possible by the American Psychiatric Association Foundation, Council of State Governments Justice Center, and National Center for State Courts.

Judge Cruff currently presides over the Richland County Treatment Court, a specialized docket which provides intense supervision, services and accountability for persons with addiction who wish to change their lives. Judge Cruff is also chair of the North Dakota judiciary’s Mental Health Work Group. The Mental Health Work Group has been active in promoting trauma awareness training for judges and suicide awareness training for judges and court staff.

Original Announcement