Grundy County

Official Website of Grundy County Government Offices

Judges of Election

The Grundy County Clerk is the chief Election Authority for the County. We are always looking for people who are interested in serving as Judges of Election. They are responsible for the proper and lawful conduct of the election in the polling place throughout the day. Their responsibilities include organizing the polling place, ensuring that every person qualified to vote is permitted to vote and that every person permitted to vote is qualified, processing the ballots and returning the ballots and supplies to the election authority at the end of the night. Judges must serve as a Democratic or Republican Judge.

What are the necessary qualifications to be an Election Judge?

Illinois Statutes (10 ILCS 5/13-4) states qualifications for persons wishing to service as Judge of Election are:

  • Be citizens of the United States and entitled to vote at the next election
  • Be a high school junior or senior (additional information in the Student Judge Section)
  • Be of good repute and character
  • Be able to speak, read and write the English language
  • Be skilled in the four fundamental rules of arithmetic (addition, subtraction, multiplication & division)
  • Be of good understanding and capable to perform the duties
  • Not be a candidate for any office at the election nor an elected precinct committeeman
  • Reside in the precinct in which they are selected to service, however, there can be exceptions to this rule
  • Declare your party preference so they can be assigned accordingly

How are judges selected?

Election Judges are chosen by the Party Chairperson and the Precinct Committeemen of each respective Political Party. Election Judges must choose a “Leading Political Party” as defined in the Illinois State Statutes. It defines a “Leading Political Party” as one of 2 political parties whose candidates for Governor at the most recent 3 gubernatorial elections received either the highest or second highest number of votes. In each precinct, the party which cast the highest average number of votes at the most recent 3 gubernatorial elections in the precinct shall be represented by 3 judges. The party which casts the second highest number of votes at the most recent gubernatorial elections in the precinct shall be represented by 2 judges. (10ILCS 5/1-3)

A certified list of people who wish to serve as an election judge is given to the County Clerk. The Clerk files the list with the Circuit Court. The Circuit Court confirms the appointment of Election Judges for a 2 year term of service. An individual commissioned to serve as an Election Judge is obligated to be available for each election during that 2 year period.

In addition to the 5 appointed Election Judges, Supplemental Election Judges are appointed and commissioned in the same manner.

Are Election Judges trained?

Before each election, Judge Training Schools are held. They cover the duties and responsibilities of Election Judges. There is an over view of the equipment to be used during the election. Any new updates are reviewed. A “test” is given at the end of the class.

As part of training, Election Judges are given an "Election Judge Manual" and CD of manual.  They are encouraged to review the information, prior to the election. 

In Grundy County, Judges earn $140.00 for each election served. Judges, who attend a training class and take the test, once every 2 years, receive an additional $40.00 for each election served. Additional pay can be earned for taking on extra responsibilities, such as picking up the polling place supplies and/or returning polling place supplies and ballots or serving as an Early Voting Judge.

Judges are paid within 1 month after the election. A W-2 form is not issued. It is the responsibility of each Election Judge to report the earnings based on IRS requirements.

If you are interested in becoming an election judge click on the ELECTION JUDGE APPLICATION, complete, and mail to the Grundy County Clerk’s office.


In addition to the above qualifications, Student Election Judges must:

  • Be a high school junior or senior in good standing
  • Have a grade point average of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale
  • Have the written approval of the principal of your high school and your parent
  • Successfully complete the state-required training session
  • Be able to work on Election Day beginning at 5:00 a.m. AND until after the polls close when all duties are completed

Student judges have the same responsibilities, duties and authority as other election judges. The law does not require a student judge to be a registered voter. The student judge receives the same rate of pay, $140.00 base and $40.00 additional for attending the required training session. Due to a law change, student judges are not allowed to be one the 2 judges to return ballots and supplies to the courthouse at the end of the night. The student may in addition to the 2 party judges, return ballots and supplies to see how the election process is completed, but no compensation will be paid.

If you are interested in acquiring a lifelong appreciation of the electoral process and wish to serve as a student judge, complete the student election application form . Return the form to your school principal or guidance counselor or the Grundy County Clerk’s office.