Durbin: Legislation to Name Rockford Courthouse After Judge Roszkowski Passes Senate

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] – U.S. Senator Dick Durbin announced today’s the passage of legislation to name the United States District Courthouse in Rockford, Illinois after Stanley J. Roszkowski, former Federal Judge in the Northern District of Illinois. Roszkowski, who served in combat as a member of a bomber crew in World War II, played an integral role in bringing a new federal courthouse to Rockford. The bill must now pass the House of Representatives.


“I am proud that my colleagues have approved this fitting tribute to a man who has devoted his life to our country and served with honor as a federal District judge,” said Durbin. “Stanley Roszkowski served bravely in World War II and worked tirelessly to see the new federal courthouse built in Rockford. I hope the House will pass this legislation quickly.”


Stanley J. Roszkowski was raised in Royalton in southern Illinois, one of fifteen children. During World War II, he volunteered for the Army Air Corps and served as a nose gunner on a B26 bomber, flying over 35 missions in Italy and Germany. After the war he went on to earn his B.A. from the University of Illinois and then his law degree, working as an appliance salesman to pay for school and meeting his wife Catherine.


When he moved to Rockford, he opened up a successful law practice and became involved in his community. He gave up this practice when President Carter appointed him to the bench, and served for the next twenty years as a Federal Judge in the Northern District of Illinois. He became known for running a business-like but relaxed courtroom, and was praised by his peers for being extremely knowledgeable, fair and objective, and a gentlemen at all times, with a wide breadth of experience and an uncommon sense of decency.


Durbin and Congressman Don Manzullo (R-IL) worked to secure federal funds for the new Rockford courthouse since the project’s inception – a total of more than $99 million. The existing Rockford courthouse was built more than 25 years ago. It is filled to capacity and has structural problems that would be prohibitively expensive to repair, impeding efficient functioning of the court. In addition, the lack of a separate prisoner entrance compromises security at the facility.