Tags: texas | chief | justice | quits

Financial Pressure Forces Texas Chief Justice to Quit

Tuesday, 03 Sep 2013 04:22 PM

By Bill Hoffmann

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Wallace Jefferson — the first African-American appointed as Chief Justice of the Texas Supreme Court — is resigning due to financial pressures.

Jefferson informed Gov. Rick Perry last week of his decision to officially step down on Oct. 1, the Dallas Morning News reports.

"I love being chief justice because it is a great job. I’m going to move on to some new challenges, though I’m not sure what yet," Jefferson said, according to the newspaper.

He added that having one son in college and two sons in high school had placed financial pressure on his family. Jefferson earns $170,000 annually as chief justice.

Perry tapped Jefferson for the state Supreme Court in 2001 to replace Alberto Gonzales, who resigned to become President George W. Bush’s counsel.

Jefferson was elevated to the top spot when Chief Justice Tom Phillips left three years later.

Jefferson helped make courts more accessible to the public by getting documents posted online and placing cameras court.

He also helped the poor get better access to legal services.
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