Chief Judge John Michael Guidry is a 1980 graduate of Mckinley High School and received his B.A. in Political Science from LSU in 1983 and is a 1987 Cum Laude graduate of the Southern University Law Center.

Chief Judge Guidry formerly served as a legislative assistant to the Honorable Joseph A. Delpit and as the Assistant Clerk of the Louisiana House of Representatives. He also served as an Assistant Parish Attorney for the City of Baton Rouge and the Parish of East Baton Rouge.

Chief Judge Guidry is a former commissioner of the Greater Baton Rouge Port Commission and the Greater Baton Rouge Metropolitan Airport Commission. Chief Judge Guidry serves as an adjunct professor at the Southern University Law Center and formerly served as an adjunct professor in the Nelson Mandela School of Public Policy at Southern University. Chief Judge Guidry was elected to the Louisiana House of Representatives in 1991 and to the Louisiana State Senate in 1993.

Chief Judge Guidry is active in community service and in professional organizations. He is a member of the Council of Chief Judges of the State Courts of Appeal (where he serves as Secretary/Treasurer and Chairman of the Finance Committee), the American and National Bar
Associations, the Louisiana Judicial Council of the National Bar Association (where he sits on the Executive Committee) and the American Judges Association. He is also a member of the Louisiana State Bar Association and a fellow of the Louisiana State Bar Foundation. He is a member of the Louisiana Supreme Court Historical Society, the Baton Rouge Bar Association, the Louis A. Martinet Legal Society, the Louisiana Conference Court of Appeal Judges, and the Louisiana Judicial Council of the National Bar Association. Chief Judge Guidry formerly served as the Louisiana Conference of Court of Appeal Judges’ representative to the Louisiana Judicial Council and was appointed twice by the Louisiana Supreme Court, on the recommendation of its Chief Justice, to serve on the governing body of the Louisiana Judicial College.

In 2014, Judge Guidry served as President of the Louisiana Judicial College Board of Governors. He is also a member of the Louisiana
Domestic Violence Judicial Curriculum Advisory Committee and a member of the Baton Rouge Bar Association Pro Bono Committee. He was first elected to his current position, as a Judge of the First Circuit Court of Appeal, in October 1997. On January 1, 2023, he made history when he became the 15th Chief Judge of the Louisiana First Circuit Court of Appeal and the first African American to hold that position in the more than 100-year history of the court.

Chief Judge John Michael Guidry is the son of Mrs. Annie Mae Jones and the late John Albert Guidry. He is married to the former Carol Fowler of Maringouin, Louisiana. They have a son, John Morgan, and a daughter, Kennedy Michelle.

Chief Judge Guidry is also an ordained deacon and the former Sunday School Superintendent at Fairview Baptist Church.