Arizona Supreme Court

Arizona Supreme Court

Seal of the Arizona Supreme Court
Established 1912
Country United States
Location Phoenix, Arizona
Composition method Missouri plan with retention elections
Authorized by Arizona Constitution
Decisions are appealed to Supreme Court of the United States
Judge term length 6 years
Number of positions 7
Website Official site
Chief Justice
Currently Scott Bales
Since July 1, 2014
Lead position ends June 30, 2019

The Arizona Supreme Court is the state supreme court of the U.S. state of Arizona. It consists of a chief justice, a vice chief justice, and five associate justices. Each justice is appointed by the governor of Arizona from a list recommended by a bipartisan commission. Justices stand for retention in an election two years after their appointment and then every six years.[1] They must retire at age 70.

The chief justice is chosen for a five-year term by the court, and is eligible for re-election. He or she supervises the administration of all the inferior courts. He or she is Chairman of the Commission on Appellate Court Appointments, which nominates candidates to fill vacancies in the appellate courts. If the Governor fails to appoint one of the nominated candidates within sixty days of their names being submitted to her or him, the Chief Justice makes the appointment.

The Vice Chief Justice, who acts as Chief Justice in the latter's "absence or incapacity," is chosen by the court for a term determined by the court.[2]

The jurisdiction of the court is prescribed by Article VI, Section 5 of the Arizona Constitution.[3] Most of the appeals heard by the court go through the Arizona Court of Appeals, except for death penalty cases, over which the Arizona Supreme Court has sole appellate jurisdiction. The court also has original jurisdiction in a few other circumstances as outlined in the Arizona Constitution. A quorum is three, but the whole court must sit in order to declare a law unconstitutional.[4]


The current Arizona Supreme Court includes:

Membership history

Alfred Franklin, Donald L. Cunningham, and Henry D. Ross took office on February 14, 1912.

Name Length of tenure Beginning Succeeded by
Alfred Franklin 6.5 years 2/14/1912 John Wilson Ross
John Wilson Ross 8 weeks 11/13/1918 Albert C. Baker
Donald L. Cunningham 9 years 2/14/1912 Archibald G. McAlister
Albert C. Baker 2.5 years 1/16/1919 Edward G. Flanigan
Edward G. Flanigan 1 year 9/28/1921 Frank H. Lyman
Frank H. Lyman 2 years 1/1/1923 Alfred C. Lockwood
Alfred C. Lockwood 18 years 1/5/1925 Rawghlie Clement Stanford
Archibald G. McAlister 24 years 1/4/1921 Arthur T. LaPrade
Henry D. Ross 33 years 2/14/1912 Joseph H. Morgan
Joseph H. Morgan 2 years 2/13/1945 Levi Stewart Udall
Evo Anton DeConcini 4 years Dudley W. Windes
Rawghlie Clement Stanford 12 years 1/4/1943 Fred C. Struckmeyer Jr.
Arthur T. LaPrade 12.5 years 1/1/1945 J. Mercer Johnson
Dudley W. Windes 6 years 1/13/1953 Charles C. Bernstein
Levi Stewart Udall 13 years 1/6/1947 Jesse Addison Udall
J. Mercer Johnson 3 years 9/16/1957 Robert O. Lesher
Robert O. Lesher 2.5 months 9/20/1960 Renz L. Jennings
Marlin T. Phelps 12 years Lorna E. Lockwood
Renz L. Jennings 3.5 years 12/12/1960 Edward W. Scruggs
Edward W. Scruggs 5 months 8/5/1964 Ernest McFarland
Charles C. Bernstein 10 years 1/5/1959 Jack D. H. Hays
Ernest McFarland 6 years 1/4/1965 James Duke Cameron
Jesse Addison Udall 11.5 years 6/15/1960 William A. Holohan
Lorna E. Lockwood 14 years 1/1/1961 Frank X. Gordon Jr.
Fred C. Struckmeyer Jr. 27 years 1/3/1955 Stanley G. Feldman
Jack D. H. Hays 18 years 1/4/1969 James Moeller
William A. Holohan 17 years 1/17/1972 Robert J. Corcoran
Frank X. Gordon Jr. 16.5 years 9/16/1975 Thomas A. Zlaket
James Duke Cameron 21 years 1/4/1971 Frederick J. Martone
Robert J. Corcoran 7 years 1/5/1989 Charles E. Jones
James Moeller 11 years 2/23/1987 Ruth V. McGregor
Frederick J. Martone 10 years 2/28/1992 Rebecca White Berch
Thomas A. Zlaket 10 years 2/3/1992 Michael D. Ryan
Stanley Feldman 20 years 1/19/1982 Andrew D. Hurwitz
Charles E. Jones 9 years 4/26/1996 W. Scott Bales
Ruth McGregor 11 years 2/13/1998 John Pelander
Michael D. Ryan 9 years 5/22/2002 Robert M. Brutinel
Rebecca White Berch 13 years 4/8/2002 Clint Bolick
Andrew D. Hurwitz 9 years 3/17/2003 Ann A. Scott Timmer
W. Scott Bales Presently serving 9/16/2005 Not applicable
John Pelander Presently serving 9/8/2009 Not applicable
Robert M. Brutinel Presently serving 1/10/2011 Not applicable
Ann A. Scott Timmer Presently serving 11/26/2012 Not applicable
Clint Bolick Presently serving 1/6/2016 Not applicable

Chief Justices

See also



External links

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