First Female Utah Supreme Court Justice To Retire

May 3, 2017

The Utah Supreme Court’s first female judge is retiring after 35 years on the bench. Justice Christine M. Durham will step down in November. Durham submitted a letter of resignation Tuesday to Governor Gary Herbert. She became the first female supreme court justice in Utah in 1982, when then-Governor, Scott Matheson appointed her. Durham made history again in 2002 when she was elected as Utah’s first female supreme court chief justice. Geoffrey Fattah is a spokesperson for Utah State Courts. He says Durham will be remembered for encouraging more diversity on the bench.

“In particular, she was known for pushing and encouraging more women attorney’s to apply for judgeship positions,” Fattah says. “I think also she would be known for making technology improvements to the courts, moving us forward into a more digital system, in which all of our records would be filed electronically as well as the court record being digital audio.”

Utah Supreme Court Chief Justice Matthew B. Durrant said in a statement that Durham is a brilliant jurist, a wonderful colleague, and a truly remarkable human being. He praised Durham for her contributions to building a court system that he says has come to be recognized as a national model.

Justice Durham’s last day on the bench will be Nov. 16, 2017.