Judicial Selection Commission
Commission Roster 2017
Charles G. Douglas, III, Chairman
Jack Sanders, Vice-Chair
New Hampshire Legal Assistance
|Sheriff Scott Hilliard|
Merrimack County Sheriff
Former Speaker of the House
Partner, Sheehan Phinney
Exec. Director, Coos Economic Development Corp.
Nashua Business Owner
President and CEO,Central Paper Products
Formation of Commission
Governor Sununu Appoints Panel to Make Recommendations on Judicial Nominations
February 6, 2017
Governor Sununu Executive Order 2017-01 Creating Judicial Selection Commission
Stating that highly qualified judges are essential for a fair, just and effective judicial system, Governor Chris Sununu issued an Executive Order establishing a Judicial Selection Commission to advise the Governor on judicial nominations. The Commission will broadly seek judicial candidates, evaluate all potential applicants and recommend qualified applicants based on experience, good character and judicial temperament.
“Judges are the umpires of our society’s contending forces, as they help to make the difference between a society governed by the law of force and one living under the force of law,” Governor Chris Sununu said. “Putting forth judicial nominations is a responsibility that I take seriously and one that I believe should be done with thoughtful consideration and with substantive input from specialists in a variety of fields. So, I am thrilled today to establish a Judicial Selection Commission that I am confident will be an invaluable resource to me in nominating experienced, qualified individuals to New Hampshire’s courts.”
Commission Chair Chuck Douglas, a former Congressman and Superior Court and Supreme Court Justice, brings a wealth of experience to the team with his nearly fifty years as a practicing trial lawyer and more than a decade of service on New Hampshire’s bench. Douglas is also a founder of the law firm Douglas, Leonard & Garvey, P.C.
“When life, liberty and property are at stake in our courtrooms, we must not only have justice, but the appearance and feel that justice was done no matter who won or lost,” said Douglas. “I am honored to serve on Governor Sununu’s Judicial Selection Commission and I am excited to lead a team of experienced and talented commissioners.”
All judicial nominations are subject to confirmation by the Executive Council, and the Governor’s Judicial Selection Committee includes members with a wide range of experience in New Hampshire’s system of justice representing each of the state’s five Executive Council districts. Members will serve terms of three years, with the option of additional terms at the invitation of the Governor.
In evaluating applicants for judicial office, the Commission will consider such factors as integrity, legal knowledge and ability, judicial temperament, impartiality, commitment to justice, experience, diligence, administrative and communication skills, and public service. Applicants for judicial office shall be considered without regard to race, disability, religion, gender, national origin, sexual orientation, familial status or political affiliation.
The Commission will initially focus on recruiting candidates to fill current vacancies on New Hampshire’s Circuit Court.