Ind. chief justice retiring

John O'Brien Dec. 7, 2011, 10:59am


INDIANAPOLIS (Legal Newsline) - Indiana Supreme Court Chief Justice Randall Shepard is retiring from the bench.

Shepard made the announcement Wednesday after 26 years on the court. He has authored nearly 900 opinions and 68 law review articles during his time on the Supreme Court.

Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller said Shepard has made good on a promise to transform the court into one "that is nationally respected and whose legal insight and analysis serves to lead the development of the law."

"His reform efforts in the Court's jurisdiction and in capital case handling and review have made Indiana a national model; and through technology he championed, the public's access to and understanding of the Court and its workings have greatly expanded," Zoeller added. "His tenure will be highly rated in the history of our state."

Gov. Robert Orr appointed Shepard to the Supreme Court in 1985, and two years later Shepard was selected as chief justice.

Prior to joining the court, Shepard graduated from Princeton University in 1969 and from Yale Law School in 1972. He was the executive assistant to the mayor of Evansville and also served as special assistant to the Under Secretary of the U.S. Department of Transportation.

His judicial career began in 1980 as a judge on the Vanderburgh County Superior Court. He will retire in March.

In Indiana, the Judicial Nominating Commission interviews candidates for his replacement and sends a list of three to the governor. Gov. Mitch Daniels will pick from that field, and the commission will select one of the justices to take over as chief justice.

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