A commission formed by Guilford County government and the court system in the county has begun assembling a three-person commission that will create a list of names of county residents. 

And, if your name is on that list provided by the commission – a commission most people have never heard of – you could be forced to leave your job for weeks or longer – and be put to work for the county for $3 to $4 per hour.

 The powerful body is the Guilford County Jury Commission, which, in every odd-numbered year, puts together a list of potential jurors for the court system to pull jurors from.  Recently, the Guilford County Board of Commissioners named April Coleman, a former county Emergency Services worker, to the commission.

Guilford County Clerk to the Board Robin Keller explained the makeup and duties of the Jury Commission in an email.

“Every county has a statutorily mandated jury commission, and each jury commission is composed of three members,” Keller wrote.

Chapter 9 of North Carolina General Statutes is where the mandate originates.  

Keller stated that, in counties across North Carolina, one member is appointed by the board of county commissioners, one is appointed by the senior resident superior court judge, and the other seat is filled by the clerk of superior court for the county.

“Their role is to prepare a jury list every odd numbered year of prospective jurors, beginning on July 1 before each even numbered year to December 31 of the next year,” Keller wrote.

She went on to state that the commission’s duties consist of “determining the number of names that will be needed for the master list, approving the data processing procedure, and removing names of disqualified persons from the jury list.”

Coleman stated on her application to the Board of Commissioners that she has dedicated most of her life “to the cause and mission of our government.”

She added, “I believe the skillset that I have gained during my tenure as well as my educational achievements will be an asset to any board.  Also, my administrative skills, as well as my personal development skills, will serve as an enhancement to any board on which I would serve.”

Don’t blame April if you get called for jury duty – she’s just doing her job as a jury commission member.