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3 Supreme Court Justice applicants submitted to Governor

BOISE, Idaho (KIFI) - The Idaho Judicial Council announced Wednesday it has submitted the names of three potential appointees for a position on the Idaho Supreme Court to Gov. Brad Little.

Those selected by the Judicial Council include:

  • Jessica M. Lorello of Meridian, a judge for the Idaho Court of Appeals
  • Diane M. Walker of Meridian, a magistrate judge in the Fourth Judicial District
  • Colleen D. Zahn of Boise, an Idaho deputy attorney general in that office's Criminal Law Division

Nine attorneys and judges from across Idaho applied to succeed retiring Justice Roger Burdick, but one later withdrew. The applicants were interviewed on April 27 in a public session of the Judicial Council.

Gov. Little will now select a new justice from among the three selected.

The Supreme Court is Idaho's highest court. It hears appeals from trial courts across the state, certain original claims involving the state of Idaho and oversees the administration of Idaho's statewide court system.

Idaho Code 1-2102 tasks the Judicial Council with reviewing applicants when a vacancy opens on the Supreme Court during a term of office. After interviewing the applicants and reviewing public comment, the Judicial Council selects two to four names to provide to Gov. Little. The governor then appoints one person from those names to the Supreme Court.

Justice Burdick will retire June 30 after 47 years as an attorney, judge and justice in Idaho's courts. He announced his retirement Feb. 3. The new appointee will serve the remainder of Justice Burdick's term, which ends in January 2023. A nonpartisan election to elect a justice for the next six-year term will be held in May 2022.

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