Local Pride in Our Supreme Court Chief Justice

May 20, 2009

There are special moments in the legislature that make an indelible impression. One of those moments recently presented itself when we convened a joint session to listen to Chief Justice Chase T. Rogers deliver her State of the Judiciary address in the Hall of the House.

I remember my first meeting with Attorney Chase Rogers of New Canaan over a decade ago when I was a newly elected State Representative. As a new constituent, Ms. Rogers of New Canaan was being recommended for appointment to the Connecticut bench.

Back then, she was an attorney at Cummings & Lockwood and I distinctly remember her telling me that she is not a political person, and was not registered as a member of any political party. As a judicial appointment can, at times, be political in nature, we discussed the process and other pertinent issues. I remember being impressed by Ms. Rogers’ integrity, demeanor, experience and intelligence. I came away from my meeting with her convinced that she was a compassionate person who took pride in being a lawyer and a mediator, someone who members of her profession came to for advice – a lawyer’s lawyer.

This successful appointment in 1998 came on the heels of a very controversial and contentious vote to remove a sitting judge from the bench. I drove home that night with the sense that, at least on this day, justice was served.

Sitting in the Hall of the House, listening to our Chief Justice address the General Assembly on May 14th, I could not help but reflect on why I am so proud to represent the 26th Senatorial District. After a distinguished career in the Superior Court, followed by the Appellate Court, Chase T. Rogers was sworn in as Chief Justice of the State Supreme Court on April 25, 2007. It was a proud day for all of Fairfield County.

Chief Justice Rogers opened her remarks to the General Assembly last week by saying that one of her primary goals is to keep the lines of communication open among all three branches of government, and went on to describe some of the developments in the Judicial Branch. I urge everyone interested in learning more about our judicial system to take the time to read her speech posted on the State of Connecticut Judicial Branch website at www.jud.ct.gov.