GREEN BAY - Brown County will soon have a new judge.
Governor Scott Walker appointed Brown County District Attorney John Zakowski to the position Wednesday.
After about 25 years as Brown County's District Attorney, Zakowski says the time is right for the move.
"It'll be an adjustment, but I think it's something I'll be able to handle," said Zakowski.
Zakowski will replace J.D. McKay as judge for the sixth branch of Brown County's Circuit Court.
In a statement Walker says he appointed Zakowski because, "his extensive qualifications and community involvement make him an ideal candidate to serve on the Brown County Circuit Court."
"It's an honor," said Zakowski. "I don't necessarily see it as a step up, but more out, in a different way of serving the public in a different capacity in the system."
Zakowski says his role as D.A. featured several highlight cases, including the 2006 Carl Morgan murder case, which happened outside Zakowski's office. He also remembers the East High School conspiracy case, where three teens were charged with plotting to attack the school.
Zakowski says the case that is on a level of its own is the 1992 James Monfils murder. It sent six men to prison, with one later being exonerated.
"Fortunately there are very few regrets," said Zakowski.
However, author Dennis Gullickson contends the Monfils case is the big one Zakowski has wrong. Gullickson wrote the book, "The Monfils Consipracy". It aims to show the men involved were wrongly convicted.
"John has done some good things for Brown County," said Gullickson. "Unfortunately he got the Monfils case wrong and five innocent men and their families continue to pay for that."
Zakowski has stood by his prosecution of the men.
He says he is now focused on learning the ropes of wearing the judges' robe.
"There will be a learning curve there clearly, but we'll do whatever we have to to get up to speed and do a good job," said Zakowski.
Zakowski expects to be on the bench by February 1st. Zakowski expects to start with mostly non criminal matters to avoid cases his office was overseeing. He says his work will likely begin with family and juvenile law and civil cases.
After almost 80 years, a piece of naval history is on its way home. A model of the Japanese luxury liner Hikawa Maru is being packed up in Manitowoc and returned to Japan.
Visitors to Green Bay's Neville Public Museum will soon see hours slashed. The county-owned attraction is cutting access starting the first of the year.
An 11-foot-long model of the Japanese passenger liner Hikawa Maru is being sent back to Japan after 34 years at the Wisconsin Maritime Museum in Manitowoc.
Area volunteers are making a difference in the community this holiday season. At this time of the year, many people are looking for ways to help their neighbors. The Salvation Army is one of the many places where you can do just that.
For the second year in a row, St. Norbert College could house overflow of homeless people from the St. John the Evangelist shelter in Green Bay.
A memorial fund has been created for a Grand Chute firefighter killed in a weekend car crash.