Crowd forms for Supreme Court appointment

  • Wed Apr 9th, 2014 2:16pm
  • News

By Jerry Cornfield

There’s no shortage of legal minds wanting to succeed Supreme Court Justice James Johnson when he retires at the end of this month.

Nearly 20 people from across the spectrum of the legal profession applied for the appointment, according to Nicholas Brown, general counsel to Gov. Jay Inslee. The deadline to apply was April 4.

Brown declined to name the applicants but said they include Superior Court and appellate judges as well as private attorneys specializing in commercial and criminal law.

Most of the hopefuls live in Western Washington but a few are from the east side of the state, he said.

Brown said he will interview applicants this week and next week then provide a short list of finalists for the governor to consider interviewing. Inslee is not limited to names on the list and could choose someone who did not formally apply, Brown explained.

The goal is to make a selection by the end of April or in early May.

Johnson, a voice for property rights, law enforcement and open government for the past decade, announced last month he will retire April 30. He said health reasons prompted the decision.