Breaking News from the Providence Journal 7-7 Blog:
Superior Court Presiding Justice Joseph F. Rodgers Jr. on Wednesday announced his retirement from the bench at the same time that Governor Carcieri announced he was nominating Rodgers’ daughter, Kristen E. Rodgers, for a seat on the same court.
Presiding Justice Rodgers, 67, said in an interview with The Providence Journal that his retirement will be effective Aug. 28. He said he expected the Senate Judiciary Committee to take up his daughter’s nomination late next week — and a vote taken on her confirmation — before the legislature adjourns for the session.
Joseph F. Rodgers has been a judge for 35 years and when he retires will get a pension equal to his full salary, which as of July 1 will be $185,649, he said.
He said he was announcing his retirement now “to accelerate the process” so the General Assembly can name someone to take his place on the Superior Court sooner rather than later. He said it was his understanding that the legislature was planning to return for a special session in August or September to take up additional judicial nominations.
The Judicial Nominating Commission would have to advertise, hold hearings and vote on candidates to present to Carcieri to fill Rodgers’ slot on the bench.
Rodgers’ 41-year-old daughter is a partner at Blish & Cavanagh which concentrates in civil litigation. She is filling the vacancy that was created by the retirement of Superior Court Judge Vincent A. Ragosta last year.
Rodgers said that he already knows of at least one judge on his court who wishes to succeed him as presiding justice — Alice B. Gibney.