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Idaho Politics

New Chief Justice named as Roger Burdick moves to Vice Chief

Idaho Supreme Court Chief Justice Roger Burdick
Idaho Supreme Court - State of Idaho
Idaho Supreme Court Chief Justice Roger Burdick

BOISE, Idaho (KIFI/KIDK) - The Idaho Supreme Court announced Wednesday Idaho Supreme Court Chief Justice Roger Burdick will be stepping down as Chief Justice at the end of his current term on December 31, 2020.

Burdick will remain on the court as Vice Chief Justice — a position traditionally held by the most senior justice not serving as the Court’s Chief Justice.

Justice G. Richard Bevan will take over duties as the Chief Justice beginning January 1, 2021.

Justice G. Richard Bevan

Burdick has been a member of the Supreme Court since his appointment in 2003 and is concluding his second term as Chief Justice, having previously served in the position from August 2011 to July 2014.

As detailed in the Idaho constitution, the Chief Justice serves as the executive head of the state’s judicial system. Terms in the position last four years. Sitting Justices elect a Chief Justice by majority vote at the end of each term.

“Justice Bevan has continually set high personal standards in his professional and private lives and has had tremendous success as a result,” Burdick said. “He will continue that distinguished example as Chief Justice of the Idaho Supreme Court.”

Bevan was appointed as the 56th Justice of the Idaho Supreme Court by Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter on September 1, 2017. He was born and raised in Twin Falls, graduating from Twin Falls High School in 1977. He received his undergraduate and law degrees from BYU, graduating in 1987 from BYU’s J. Reuben Clark Law School.  He was admitted to the Idaho State Bar that same year.

Bevan practiced law in Twin Falls for over sixteen years, serving as the Twin Falls County Prosecutor from 1993 to 1997. While a practicing attorney, Justice Bevan was elected President of the Fifth District Bar Association and served on a number of statewide, law-related committees. He is also a past president and board member of the Magic Valley YMCA and the CARES advisory board.

Governor Dirk Kempthorne appointed Bevan as a district judge in November 2003, where he served for fourteen years. As a state district judge, he presided over both the Fifth Judicial District Mental Health Court and the Veteran’s Treatment Court. He also served for eight years as the Administrative District Judge. Bevan is presently the chair of the Idaho Supreme Court’s Treatment Court Committee, its Criminal Rules Committee and its Security Committee.

Bevan is a 2014 graduate of the National Center for State Courts Toll Fellowship Program. In 2019, Bevan was awarded the Leaders in Law Lifetime Achievement Award from the Idaho Business Review.

“The Idaho judiciary, as the third branch of government, is filled with outstanding women and men who serve Idaho’s citizens with distinction. I am humbled and honored to be elected to serve as their Chief Justice for the next four years,” Bevan said. “The trying times in which we are now living require vitality and constructive thinking from each of us, and I pledge on behalf of all judges in our state that we will persist in rising to the occasion by maintaining the tradition of excellence that Idaho’s judiciary is known for — and that our citizens expect and deserve.”

Bevan lives in Meridian with his wife, Pam.  They are the proud parents of five children and eleven grandchildren. In addition to his work on the bench, Bevan enjoys the arts, is active in his church and appreciates the beauty that Idaho offers by getting outdoors as often as possible. In 2019, he performed in Carnegie Hall with his children and grandchildren as part of the Treasure Valley Millennial Choir and Orchestra.

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