Head of state court nominated to Maine SC

By Jessica M. Karmasek | May 4, 2015

AUGUSTA, Maine (Legal Newsline) - Maine Gov. Paul LePage last week nominated the head of the state Superior Court to fill a vacancy on the state’s highest court.

LePage announced Wednesday Thomas Humphrey will serve as associate justice to the Maine Supreme Judicial Court, taking over for retired Justice Warren Silver.


“I am pleased to nominate Chief Justice Humphrey,” LePage said. “He carries a distinguished record serving the Maine people well.


“In choosing judges, my focus is on the qualifications, demeanor and integrity of the candidates, not politics. I have confidence Chief Justice Humphrey will continue to serve with the honor, integrity and reason he is known for.”


Humphrey was appointed to a state district court in 1993 by then-Gov. John McKernan and in 1997 was appointed deputy chief judge.

He was first nominated to the superior court by then-Gov. Angus King in 1998 and was reappointed by then-Gov. John Baldacci in 2005. Humphrey has served as chief justice of the superior court since 2004.


“I am thrilled and very honored to be nominated by Gov. LePage,” the judge said. “And I am grateful to him for considering me for this important position.”


Prior to his work as a judge, Humphrey was a partner with Springvale, Maine, law firm Roberts Shirley & Humphrey. He also served as assistant district attorney for York County.


He is a graduate of Boston College and received his law degree from Boston College Law School.


Silver resigned from the court in December, after almost a decade on the state Supreme Court, to “pursue other professional endeavors in the practice of law.”


He was appointed to the high court in July 2005, after a career in private practice.


He is credited with overseeing the design and building of the new Penobscot Judicial Center, and leading the court through a complete overhaul of the Maine Rules of Professional Conduct and helping to update the state’s civil process.


Humphrey’s nomination, like a judicial nominees, must be reviewed by the state’s Joint Standing Committee on Judiciary and confirmed by the full Senate.


From Legal Newsline: Reach Jessica Karmasek by email at jessica@legalnewsline.com.

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