Thu., August 15, 2013 5:04pm (EDT)

Meet Georgia's New Top Judge
By Claire Simms
Updated: 1 year ago

ATLANTA  —  
Justice Hugh Thompson was sworn as Chief Justice of the Georgia Supreme Court by former Governor Zell Miller.  (Photo by Claire Simms)
Justice Hugh Thompson was sworn as Chief Justice of the Georgia Supreme Court by former Governor Zell Miller. (Photo by Claire Simms)
Chief Justice Hugh Thompson was sworn in Thursday as the Georgia Supreme Court’s new leader. Thompson is the 30th Chief Justice of the state’s highest court.

Former Governor Zell Miller appointed Thompson to the Supreme Court in 1994 and performed Thompson’s swearing in ceremony inside the House chambers at the state Capitol.

In a short speech, Chief Justice Thompson said he will not let partisanship influence the decisions of the court.

“I promise I will do all within my power to uphold the values and goals of our forefathers,” Thompson told the crowd gathered for the ceremony. “I will continue to work hard to ensure that we maintain fair and impartial courts, dispense equal justice to everyone and treat all those who enter our courts with dignity and with respect.”

Former Chief Justice Carol Hunstein, who will continue to serve on the Court, said her successor has proven to be a calm and positive leader.

“The new Chief Justice Thompson is going to do his best to make sure that everyone has access to their judicial system and that it’s fair and impartial and that everyone is treated equally and with respect,” Hunstein said.

During her tenure, Hunstein helped guide the state policies reforming both the juvenile and criminal justice systems. She said Thompson will oversee the Supreme Court’s role in the next big reform effort, which Hunstein believes will be civil forfeiture policy.

Thompson, a Milledgeville native, will serve a four year term as Chief Justice.