Judge Render M. Heard, Jr. is currently Judge of the Juvenile Courts of the Tifton Judicial Circuit where he has presided over the Juvenile Courts of Tift, Worth, Turner and Irwin Counties since 2012.
Judge Heard graduated from Mercer University’s Walter F. George School of Law with his Juris Doctor degree in 1997. Prior to that, he completed his undergraduate curriculum at Mercer University’s College of Liberal Arts in 1992 where he was a member of Beta, Beta, Beta and Alpha Epsilon Delta Honor Societies earning a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Biology.
Judge Heard thereafter began private practice in Tifton, Georgia in 1997 with an emphasis is family law. In 2004, Judge Heard was appointed by then Attorney General Thurbert Baker as Special Assistant Attorney General (S.A.A.G.) representing the Department of Human Services’ division of Family and Children Services. Prior to that time, he served as a parent attorney and guardian ad litem for children involved in juvenile court matters.
Judge Heard is actively involved in the activities of the State Bar of Georgia. He is a member and past president of the Tifton Bar Association and currently represents the Tifton Judicial Circuit on the State Bar’s Board of Governors where he serves as vice-chairman of the SOLACE committee and as a member of the Children and Court’s Committee. He is a lifetime Fellow of the Lawyer’s Foundation of Georgia, and previously served on the Board of Directors of Young Lawyer's Division of the State Bar from 2000-2004.
Judge Heard is active on Georgia’s Council of Juvenile Court Judges, most recently serving on the Council’s Executive Committee from 2014-2016. In addition, he was appointed by Speaker of the House David Ralston in 2015 to serve on the state’s Child Advocate Advisory Committee working with the Office of the Child Advocate to ensure protection for the children of our state.
Locally, Judge Heard is a member of the committee for Tifton’s chapter of Young Life, a 2000 Graduate of the Leadership Tifton program, a former Ambassador for the Tift County Chamber of Commerce, past president of the Board of Directors of the United Way of South Central Georgia, a past member of the Board of Directors for the Tift County Foundation for Educational Excellence, and a past member of the Tift County Athletic Advisory Committee.
Judge Heard is married to Stacey Heard, and they have three children, Grant, Alexandria and Gabriella.
Children In Need of Services (CHINS)
- Tifton Judicial Circuit