Governor Charlie Baker looking for nominees to state’s highest court

2 justices of Supreme Judicial Court will be retiring next year

BOSTON (WWLP) – Governor Charlie Baker is looking for applicants to fill two upcoming vacancies on the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court.

Two judges are retiring from the state’s highest court in 2017: Justice Margot Botsford and Justice Geraldine Hines. The SJC Nominating Commission will spend the next six weeks recruiting and screening applicants for those upcoming vacancies. The 21-member panel is looking for candidates who work well with others, and can interpret laws impartially and independently.

The Supreme Judicial Court is the last stop on all legal matters and constitutional questions in the Commonwealth.

Appointments to the SJC last up until the mandatory retirement age of 70.

State Senator Jim Welch (D-West Springfield) told 22News that he would like to see someone from western Massachusetts on the bench.

“The SJC would be better served to have somebody from western Massachusetts on it when the governor is making the next round of recommendations,” Welch said.

Governor Baker nominated three justices to the SJC earlier this year. They were all unanimously confirmed by the Governor’s Council, and sworn-in.