• 63°

Ole Miss law grad to take over as Court of Appeals’ Chief Judge

A University of Mississippi School of Law graduate has been appointed to be next Chief Judge of the Mississippi Court of Appeals, according to a release.

Judge T. Kenneth Griffis Jr., a 1987 graduate of UM’s College of Law, was appointed as the sixth Chief Judge of the Court of Appeals by Chief Justice of the Supreme Court Bill Waller Jr.

Griffis, 57, will assume his seat on January 2, 2019, and be the presiding judge over the three-judge panels during oral arguments and internal cases discussion. He will fill the seat vacated by Chief Judge L. Joseph Lee, who will retire from the court on December 31.

“Judge Griffis is a seasoned appellate judge with extensive experience who has always worked for and supported the improvement of the judiciary and the administration of justice,” Chief Justice Waller said in a statement. “I appreciate his willingness to take on the additional administrative duties of Chief Judge. He will be an outstanding leader as Chief Judge of the Court of Appeals.”

Griffis has been on the bench for 16 years. He was first elected District 3, Position 2 judge in November 2002. Chief Judge Lee selected him to be presiding judge in March 2011.

Griffis previously served as a member of the Mississippi Supreme Court’s Rules Advisory Committee, as well as chair of the Bench Bar Committee of the Mississippi Bar.

He was also an adjunct professor at the Mississippi College School of Law, Belhaven University, the University of Mississippi School of Law, and Meridian Community College.

“I thank Chief Justice Waller for his confidence in me in making this appointment,” Griffis said in a statement. “I look forward to continuing the excellence of the Court of Appeals and working with other members of the Court as we meet our responsibility of rendering well-reasoned and timely decisions.”

Griffis lives in Ridgeland with his wife, Mary Helen, and his five boys.