U.S. District Judge J. Phil Gilbert, who is celebrating his 21st year on the bench Thursday, has announced plans to retire next year.
The southern Illinois federal judge plans to step down in March, when he turns 65, and sent a letter to President Barack Obama stating his intentions. Glibert will become a senior judge in his retirement, which means he will have a reduced caseload.
Gilbert was appointed to his position by President George H.W. Bush in 1992.