After three short weeks of training in Traffic Court, Judge Thomas M. Cushing was assigned to the Domestic Violence Division in the Circuit Court of Cook County. He now rules on cases seeking emergency orders of protection for victims of domestic abuse. The role places him on the front lines, where the court steps into volatile situations, provides immediate protection, and fashions remedies to stem the violence and establish safe households for the most vulnerable. “This court’s work is practical and immediate. At its best, it protects the vulnerable from violence and creates safe spaces. It is extremely gratifying work,” said Judge Cushing.