Gartin Building Courtroom with the Great Seal of the State of Mississippi

Supreme Court Justices to take oath of office Jan. 5

December 9, 2008

Newly elected justices of the Mississippi Supreme Court will take the oath of office on Monday, Jan. 5, 2009, at 9:30 a.m. in the En Banc Courtroom on the second floor of the Gartin Justice Building in Jackson.

Justice Ann H. Lamar of Senatobia, Justice-elect James W. Kitchens of Crystal Springs, Justice-elect David A. Chandler of Ackerman and Justice-elect Randy Pierce of Leakesville will take the oath. The proceedings will be brief. Justices take the oath at the start of the term of office so that they may begin their duties on the Supreme Court.

Formal investiture ceremonies for the incoming Chief Justice and new justices are scheduled throughout the month of January. An investiture is a ceremonial occasion which includes guest speakers and remarks from the justice who is being honored.

Here is the schedule for investiture ceremonies:

• Chief Justice William L. Waller Jr., Thursday, Jan. 8, 11 a.m., Gartin Justice Building En Banc Courtroom, Jackson;

• Justice-elect James W. Kitchens, Saturday, Jan. 17, 2 p.m., Copiah County Courthouse, Hazlehurst;

• Justice-elect David A. Chandler, Friday, Jan. 23, 2 p.m., Mississippi State University, Lee Hall Auditorium, Starkville;

• Justice-elect Randy Pierce, Friday, Jan. 30, 1 p.m., Greene County High School, Leakesville.

Justices-elect Kitchens, Chandler and Pierce were elected to the Supreme Court in November 2008. Their terms begin Jan. 5, 2009.

Justice Lamar, who was appointed to the Court in May 2007, was elected to a full term in November 2008. She begins the new term Jan. 5, 2009. She does not plan a formal investiture. An investiture ceremony honoring her was held in August 2007.

The investiture ceremony for Justice Waller will mark his assumption of the duties of Chief Justice, the chief administrative officer of the state court system. Chief Justice Waller, of Jackson, first took office in January 1998, and is the longest serving justice on the Court.

Justices George C. Carlson Jr. of Batesville and James E. Graves Jr. of Jackson, both of whom joined the Court on Nov. 1, 2001, will assume the duties of Presiding Justices in January 2009. The nine-member Court usually works in panels of three justices. The Chief Justice and the two Presiding Justices each preside over a panel.