After seven years leading the Tennessee Administrative Office of the Courts and 27 years in state government, Elizabeth (Libby) Sykes has announced she will retire by the end of the year.
“Libby Sykes has enjoyed a remarkable career in her service to the State of Tennessee, especially during her tenure as administrative director of the Courts,” said Tennessee Supreme Court Chief Justice Gary Wade. “By her exceptional competence and caring manner, she and her staff have earned the respect and admiration of the entire Judicial Branch of government. “
Libby joined the AOC in 1995 and was appointed deputy director in 1999. The Supreme Court named her administrative director in 2006. The AOC provides administrative and technical support as well as training to judges throughout the state of Tennessee. Sykes directs a staff of more than 75 people and a budget of $130 million that funds courts and indigent defense. Prior to joining the AOC, Libby worked for the Tennessee Department of Corrections and was executive director of the Sentencing Commission.
“It has been a privilege to serve the judiciary of Tennessee,” Sykes said. “This is a truly honorable group of people that I have had the opportunity to work with and learn from over many years.”
Sykes is a graduate of Austin Peay State University and she earned her juris doctorate from the University of Memphis.
Sykes and her husband, Tommy Murphy, live in Clarksville. Tommy retired from the Clarksville Streets Department last year. The couple plan to spend some time traveling and Libby said she will be looking for opportunities to serve the community in other capacities, such as volunteer work, in her retirement.
“The people of Tennessee, and especially the judges of our state, could not have asked for a more dedicated public servant. During her remaining months in office, Libby's primary responsibility will be to help find the best possible successor to what I consider to be the most demanding position in the judiciary,” Wade said.
The director of the Administrative Office of the Courts is appointed by the Tennessee Supreme Court.