Peter W. Henderson has been appointed to a 14-year term as United States Bankruptcy Judge for the Central District of Illinois. Mr. Henderson succeeds Chief Bankruptcy Judge Thomas L. Perkins, who retired on March 31, 2023. Mr. Henderson took the oath of office on April 1, 2023, and joined the bankruptcy bench in Peoria.
Judge Henderson earned his bachelor’s degree magna cum laude from Brown University and his law degree summa cum laude from the University of Illinois College of Law, where he was admitted to the Order of the Coif and was a Harno Scholar. After graduating from law school in 2012, he entered public service in the Federal Public Defender’s Office in the Central District of Illinois, where he has represented indigent defendants for more than a decade, first as a Staff Attorney and then as an Assistant Federal Public Defender from 2013
to the present.
Judge Henderson has served as lead counsel in more than 100 felony cases in the Central District of Illinois and more than 300 appeals in the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. He has managed the Federal Defender’s litigation of motions under the First Step Act and has also litigated postconviction petitions under 28 U.S.C. § 2241 and 2255. His exemplary work has earned the respect of the bench and bar in our circuit. We welcome him to our bankruptcy bench.