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Chief Judge of the New York Court of Appeals


Chief Judge of the New York Court of Appeals

Chief Judge of the New York Court of Appeals refers to the position of chief judge on the New York Court of Appeals.[1] They are also known as the Chief Judge of New York.

The chief judge supervises the seven-judge Court of Appeals.[1] In addition, the chief judge oversees the work of the state's Unified Court system, which as of 2009, had a $2.5 billion annual budget and more than 16,000 employees.[1]

The chief judge is also a member of the Judicial Conference of the State of New York


  • Chief Judges before 1870 1
  • Chief Judges between 1870 and 1974 2
  • Chief Judges since 1974 3
  • References and footnotes 4

Chief Judges before 1870

Name Took office Left office Party[2] Notes
Freeborn G. Jewett July 5, 1847 December 31, 1849 Democratic
Greene C. Bronson January 1, 1850 April 1851 Democratic/Anti-Rent Resigned
Charles H. Ruggles April 1851 December 31, 1853 Democratic
Addison Gardiner January 1, 1854 December 31, 1855 Democratic/Anti-Rent
Hiram Denio January 1, 1856 December 31, 1857 Democratic
Alexander S. Johnson January 1, 1858 December 31, 1859 Democratic
George F. Comstock January 1, 1860 December 31, 1861 American Elected an associate judge on the American Party ticket, by the time his term as Chief Judge began this party had disbanded, and Comstock had become a Democrat.
Samuel L. Selden January 1, 1862 July 1, 1862 Democratic Resigned
Hiram Denio July 1, 1862 December 31, 1865 Democratic
Henry E. Davies January 1, 1866 December 31, 1867 Republican/American
William B. Wright January 1, 1868 January 12, 1868 Union Elected in 1861 on the Union ticket nominated by War Democrats and Republicans; died in office
Ward Hunt January 12, 1868 December 31, 1869 Republican Subsequently served as an Associate Justice of the United States Supreme Court
Robert Earl January 1, 1870 July 4, 1870 Democratic Legislated out of office by constitutional amendment of 1869

Chief Judges between 1870 and 1974

Name Took office Left office Party[2] Notes
Sanford E. Church July 4, 1870 May 13, 1880 Democratic Died in office
Charles J. Folger May 20, 1880 November 14, 1881 Republican Appointed to fill vacancy, then elected, then resigned to become U.S. Secretary of the Treasury
Charles Andrews December 19, 1881 December 31, 1882 Republican Appointed to fill vacancy
William C. Ruger January 1, 1883 January 14, 1892 Democratic Died in office
Robert Earl January 19, 1892 December 31, 1892 Dem./Rep. Appointed to fill vacancy
Charles Andrews January 1, 1893 December 31, 1897 Rep./Dem. Age-limited[3]
Alton B. Parker January 1, 1898 August 5, 1904 Democratic Resigned to run on the Democratic ticket for U.S. President
Edgar M. Cullen September 2, 1904 December 31, 1913 Dem./Rep. Appointed to fill vacancy, then elected, then age-limited
Willard Bartlett January 1, 1914 December 31, 1916 Democratic Age-limited
Frank H. Hiscock January 1, 1917 December 31, 1926 Rep./Progr. Age-limited
Benjamin N. Cardozo January 1, 1927 March 7, 1932 Dem./Rep. Resigned to become an Associate Justice of the United States Supreme Court
Cuthbert W. Pound March 8, 1932 December 31, 1934 Rep./Dem. Appointed to fill vacancy, then elected, then age-limited
Frederick E. Crane January 1, 1935 December 31, 1939 Rep./Dem. Age-limited
Irving Lehman January 1, 1940 September 22, 1945 Dem./Rep./Am. Labor Died in office
John T. Loughran September 28, 1945 March 31, 1953 Dem./Rep./Am. Labor/Lib. Appointed to fill vacancy, then elected, then died in office
Edmund H. Lewis April 22, 1953 December 31, 1954 Rep./Dem./Lib. Appointed to fill vacancy, then elected, then age-limited
Albert Conway January 1, 1955 December 31, 1959 Dem./Rep. Age-limited
Charles S. Desmond January 1, 1960 December 31, 1966 Dem./Rep. Age-limited
Stanley H. Fuld January 1, 1967 December 31, 1973 Rep./Dem. Age-limited
Charles D. Breitel January 1, 1974 December 31, 1978 Rep./Lib. Last elected Chief Judge; age-limited

Chief Judges since 1974

Name Took office Left office Party Notes
Lawrence H. Cooke January 23, 1979[4] December 31, 1984 Democratic First Chief Judge appointed by the Governor under constitutional amendment of 1977; age-limited
Sol Wachtler January 2, 1985 November 11, 1993 Republican Resigned
Richard D. Simons November 17, 1993 March 22, 1994 Acted until the appointment of a successor
Judith S. Kaye March 23, 1994 December 31, 2008 Democratic Age-limited; Chief Judge with the longest tenure (more than 15 years), only Chief Judge to complete a 14-year term
Jonathan Lippman February 11, 2009[5] (incumbent) Democratic

References and footnotes

  1. ^ a b c Stashenko, Joel (2009-01-14). "Lippman Is Pick for Chief Judge".  
  2. ^ a b This is the party on which ticket the Chief Judge had been elected. Where multiple parties are mentioned, the first one is the party of which the judge was a member.
  3. ^ The Chief Judge was elected to a 14-year term, but reached the constitutional age limit on December 31 of the calendar year in which he completed 70 years. A successor was then elected at the State election in November of that year. None of the elected Chief Judges (1870 to 1978) completed the 14-year term as such, but some Chief Judges served previously a full 14-year term as associate judge, or served more than 14 years counting the tenures as associate and chief judge together.
  4. ^ Nominated on January 2, confirmed by State Senate on January 23
  5. ^ Nominated on January 13, confirmed on February 11
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