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TMCNet:  Perry names chief of staff to Supreme Court

[November 26, 2012]

Perry names chief of staff to Supreme Court

Nov 27, 2012 (Austin American-Statesman - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) -- Gov. Rick Perry on Monday appointed his chief of staff, Jeffrey S. Boyd, to fill a vacancy on the Texas Supreme Court.

Boyd, a 21-year lawyer who also has served as general counsel in the governor's office, will join the court Dec. 3 and must be confirmed by the Texas Senate during the legislative session that begins in January.

Perry praised Boyd as a respected lawyer who has excelled in private practice and in government.

"He has earned my confidence, and the confidence of those he has worked with in all his endeavors, because he has a brilliant legal mind, he is committed to preserving the rule of law and he strives every day to live a life of fairness, integrity and compassion," Perry said.
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Boyd's appointed term will expire in 2014, when he would face election to remain on the court. He will replace Dale Wainwright, who resigned from the nine-member, all-Republican court Sept. 30 and joined the Austin office of Bracewell and Guiliani.

Boyd, a former senior partner in the Austin office of the Thompson and Knight law firm, also served as deputy attorney general for civil litigation. A Round Rock High School graduate, he received his law degree from Pepperdine University.

Gubernatorial appointments to the Supreme Court have become a matter of routine in recent years.

Of 21 justices who have left the court since 1990, 14 did not complete their final term, allowing the governor to name a replacement. Only seven were defeated at the ballot box or did not seek re-election.

Most of those who resigned quickly returned to private practice. Others left for a government or court job, including John Cornyn, who resigned in 1997 to run for attorney general; Priscilla Owen, who was appointed to the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals by President George W. Bush in 2005; and Alberto Gonzales, who became Bush's White House counsel in 2000.

With Boyd's appointment, Perry has named seven of the court's nine justices. Only Justices Nathan Hecht and Paul Green were initially elected to the state's highest civil court.

Like Boyd, one current justice -- David Medina -- also served as Perry's general counsel before the governor appointed him to the Supreme Court. Medina will leave the court Jan. 1 after losing the Republican primary runoff to John Devine, who was elected without Democratic opposition in the November general election.

___ (c)2012 Austin American-Statesman, Texas Visit Austin American-Statesman, Texas at www.statesman.com Distributed by MCT Information Services

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