Washington Courts: Press Release Detail
Monday’s Supreme Court Inauguration to Mark the First Time in State History for Female Majority, Chief Justice
January 10, 2013
OLYMPIA, WA - On Monday, January 14th at 9:30 a.m. newly-elected Justice Sheryl Gordon McCloud will be sworn in as the newest Justice of the Washington State Supreme Court, marking the first time in state history that the Court will have both a female majority and female Chief Justice.
The ceremony will also mark the inaugurations of Justice Susan J. Owens and Justice Steven González, who were both elected to six-year terms, and Chief Justice Barbara Madsen, who was re-elected by her colleagues to a four-year term as Chief Justice.
The event is open to the public and will be held in the Supreme Court at the Temple of Justice in Olympia.
Sheryl Gordon McCloud graduated from the State University of New York at Buffalo in 1976, and graduated from the University of Southern California Gould School of Law in 1984. She clerked for Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Warren Ferguson before beginning her practice, which included extensive experience in appellate law. In 2008, the Washington Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers awarded her their highest award, the William O. Douglas Award, for "extraordinary courage" in the practice of law.
Steven González is the first justice of Mexican heritage to serve on the bench of the Washington State Supreme Court since the formation of the Court in 1889. González was appointed to the Court in 2012, and served on the King County Superior Court bench from 2002-2012. González earned his J.D. from the University of California at Berkley’s law school and was admitted to the Washington state bar in 1991. He graduated from Pitzer College, a member of the Claremont Colleges, with a B.A. in East Asian Studies and studied abroad in undergraduate and advanced studies in Japan and China. From 1997 to 2002, González was an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the state’s Western District. He also worked in the City of Seattle Attorney’s Office from 1996 to 1997 as a trial attorney in the domestic violence unit. Before that, he practiced business and civil law with the firm Hillis Clark Martin and Peterson from 1991 to 1996.
Susan J. Owens was first elected in 2000 to the Supreme Court. She joined the court after serving nineteen years as District Court Judge in Western Clallam County, where she was the County's senior elected official with five terms. She also served as the Quileute Tribe's Chief Judge and Chief Judge of the Lower Elwha S'Klallam Tribe.
Chief Justice Barbara Madsen was elected to serve a second term as the 55th Chief Justice of the Washington State Supreme Court in October. As Chief Justice, she is the court's chief spokesperson, presides over Supreme Court hearings and conferences, and co-chairs the state's Board for Judicial Administration. The voters elected Justice Madsen as the third woman to serve on the Washington Supreme Court in 1992, and she was re-elected in 1998, 2004, and 2010.
For full biographies, please visit www.courts.wa.gov. The ceremony will be covered by TVW, Washington's Public Affairs TV Network. For channel information, or to view coverage online, visit www.tvw.org