Media release: The Georgia Senate honored state Supreme Justice Robert Benham Wednesday when it adopted a resolution commending him as a “champion of justice” and praising him for his “deep personal commitment to the citizens of Georgia.” Justice Benham will step down from the Supreme Court of Georgia when he retires March 1.
“Justice Benham has served with honor and distinction with the Georgia Supreme Court, and his vision and unyielding commitment to justice and law will be sorely missed upon the occasion of his retirement,” the resolution says.
Justice Benham made history when he became the first African American appointed to the state’s highest court in its more than 140 years. A native of Cartersville, he was appointed to the state Supreme Court in December 1989 by Gov. Joe Frank Harris.
Senate Resolution 709
By: Senators Jones of the 10th, Henson of the 41st, Parent of the 42nd, Stone of the 23rd,
Jackson of the 2nd and others
Recognizing and commending Georgia Supreme Court Justice Robert Benham upon the grand occasion of his retirement; and for other purposes.
WHEREAS, Justice Robert Benham has long been recognized by the citizens of this state for the vital role that he has played in state government and his deep personal commitment to the welfare of the citizens of Georgia; and
WHEREAS, he has diligently and conscientiously devoted innumerable hours of his time, talents, and energy toward the betterment of his community and state, as evidenced
dramatically by his service as the longest serving member of the Georgia Supreme Court; and
WHEREAS, in 1989, Justice Benham made history as the first African American appointed to the Georgia Supreme Court in its more than 140 years of existence and proceeded to serve as chief justice from 1995 to 2001; and
WHEREAS, he served as a guardian of this nation’s freedom and liberty with the United States Army Reserve, valiantly and courageously protecting his fellow Americans and
attaining the rank of captain; and
WHEREAS, during his impressive and accomplished career, Justice Benham has served as special assistant attorney general; president of the Bartow County Bar Association, where he served for two terms; and chairperson of the Governor’s Commission on Drug Awareness and Prevention; and
WHEREAS, a champion of justice, he is a member of the American Judicature Society, the Lawyers’ Club of Atlanta, the National Criminal Justice Association, and the Georgia Bar
WHEREAS, a highly educated man, Justice Benham earned his bachelor’s degree in political science from Tuskegee University in 1967, his Juris Doctorate from the University of
Georgia in 1970; and his Master of Law from the University of Virginia in 1989; and
WHEREAS, Justice Benham has served with honor and distinction with the Georgia Supreme Court, and his vision and unyielding commitment to justice and law will be sorely
missed upon the occasion of his retirement; and
WHEREAS, it is abundantly fitting and proper that the outstanding accomplishments of this remarkable and distinguished Georgian be appropriately recognized.
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE SENATE that the members of this body recognize and commend Georgia Supreme Court Justice Robert Benham for his efficient,
effective, unselfish, and dedicated public service to the State of Georgia; congratulate him upon the grand occasion of his retirement; and extend the most sincere best wishes for
continued health and happiness.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Secretary of the Senate is authorized and directed to make an appropriate copy of this resolution available for distribution to Georgia Supreme
Court Justice Robert Benham.