By Bob Katzen

Associate SJC Justice Kimberly Budd was confirmed as the next chief justice of the SJC after she was unanimously confirmed 7-0 by the Governor’s Council to succeed the late Chief Justice Ralph Gants. When sworn in, she will make history and become the first Black woman to lead the state’s highest court.

Budd, 54, was first appointed to the Superior Court in 2009 by then Gov. Deval Patrick. Gov. Charlie Baker appointed her to the Supreme Judicial Court in 2016.

Councilor Mary Hurley noted the Budd family’s roots in Springfield where her grandfather was the first Black police officer and her father is former U.S. Attorney Wayne Budd.

“Each generation has shown how powerful a work ethic and family that has the right attitude can be,” Hurley said. “Captain Joe Budd was the first Black superior office in Springfield. Wayne Budd had a career that was stellar, and now Kimberly has surpassed him and I’m just very proud as a citizen of Springfield to say that.”

“[She]is an exceptional and dignified jurist that has served on the Supreme Judicial Court with fairness and integrity and I have the utmost confidence that she will now lead the commonwealth’s highest court and all those that come before it with grace and impartiality,” said Gov. Charlie Baker.

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