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Judicial Branch, State of New Hampshire

For Immediate Release:
November 9, 2017

Chief Justice Dalianis to Retire
First woman on state’s highest court to depart in 2018

CONCORD, NH – The Judicial Branch announced today that New Hampshire Supreme Court Chief Justice Linda Stewart Dalianis will retire from the state’s highest court on April 1, 2018. Dalianis made the news public last night at a Nashua Bar event held in her honor and has also told Gov. Christopher T. Sununu of her plans. It will be up to Sununu to nominate her successor at a future date.

Reflecting on her departure, Dalianis said, “This is a bittersweet time for me. If the New Hampshire Constitution did not force me to leave, I probably would not, since I do not look forward to leaving the judicial branch behind. But, I intend to make the best of it and to try to continue to make a difference for the better in New Hampshire.”

Dalianis’s distinguished 37-year judicial career has been marked by many firsts. She became the first female to serve as chief justice starting in 2010 and also the first woman to sit on the high court after being nominated in 2000. Prior to her appointment to the supreme court, Dalianis served for almost 20 years on the superior court bench, as an associate justice and as chief justice, both of which were also firsts.

Her legacy includes founding the Daniel Webster Scholar program at the University of New Hampshire School of Law - the only program in the country that produces “client ready” lawyers who are prepared to step into the profession on the day they graduate; the J-ONE Initiative - a complex and ground-breaking program dedicated to integrating all components of New Hampshire’s criminal justice system and the NH e-Court Project that includes an e-Filing system allowing attorneys and self-represented individuals to file selected case types entirely online.

In November of this year, the Nashua Bar Association presented Chief Dalianis with its Lifetime Achievement Award. The award is given by the directors and executive committee members, in recognition of remarkable personal and professional achievements and to acknowledge dedicated service to the bar, bench and public.

This past October, Justice Dalianis received the Marilla Ricker Award from the New Hampshire Women’s Bar Association which recognizes an outstanding woman lawyer in New Hampshire who has achieved professional excellence and paved the way to success for other women lawyers, and advanced opportunities for women in the profession.

And in 2015, Dalianis received the Frank Rowe Kenison Award from the New Hampshire Bar Foundation for her substantial contributions to the betterment of New Hampshire citizens through the administration of justice, the legal profession and the advancement of legal thought.

Chief Justice Dalianis was raised in Peterborough. She is a graduate of the former Villa Augustina school in Goffstown, Northeastern University and Suffolk University Law School.



Media Contact:
Carole Alfano, Esq.
Communications Manager
NH Judicial Branch
One Charles Doe Drive
Concord, NH 03301
603.271.2646 (ext. 0243)