NATIONAL NEWS

Minnesota names first Black chief justice of state Supreme Court, Natalie Hudson

Aug 23, 2023, 5:19 AM

FILE - Judge Natalie E. Hudson smiles as she is appointed to the Minnesota Supreme Court at the Min...

FILE - Judge Natalie E. Hudson smiles as she is appointed to the Minnesota Supreme Court at the Minnesota Judicial Center, Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2015, in St. Paul, Minn. Gov. Tim Walz on Wednesday, Aug. 23, 2023, promoted Hudson to be chief justice of the Minnesota Supreme Court, making her the first Black person to lead the state's highest court, and named his former general counsel, Karl Procaccini, to fill Hudson's spot as associate justice. (Renee Jones Schneider/Star Tribune via AP, File)
Credit: ASSOCIATED PRESS

(Renee Jones Schneider/Star Tribune via AP, File)

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Gov. Tim Walz on Wednesday promoted Natalie Hudson to be chief justice of the Minnesota Supreme Court, making her the first Black person to lead it.

Hudson was appointed associate justice in 2015 by then-Gov. Mark Dayton, after serving as a judge on the Minnesota Court of Appeals for 13 years. She’ll lead the high court when current Chief Justice Lorie Gildea retires in October.

“Justice Hudson is one of our state’s most experienced jurists. She has a strong reputation as a leader and consensus builder,” Walz said in a statement. “I am confident that she will advance a vision that promotes fairness and upholds the dignity of all Minnesotans.”

“This is a tremendous responsibility that I approach with humility and resolve, seeking to continue the work of my predecessors in administering one of the best state court systems in the nation, and always seeking to deliver the most accessible, highest-quality court services for the citizens of Minnesota,” Hudson said in the same statement.

Waltz named Karl Procaccini, his former general counsel, to fill Hudson’s spot as associate justice.

Procaccini is currently a visiting professor at the University of St. Thomas School of Law. He previously served as the top lawyer in the governor’s office, where his work included the state’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Minnesota names first Black chief justice of state Supreme Court, Natalie Hudson