September 01, 2011

From the Bench: Lessons Learned as a New Chief Judge

The chief judge is looked to as the leader of the court, which means that colleagues and staff bring problems, both individual and systemic.

Catherine D. Perry

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Should we evacuate the building after two anonymous calls saying there is a bomb? That was the question I received during my first week on the job as chief judge, asked by the deputy U.S. marshal who was in his first week as the supervisor in charge of building security. My reaction: “Oh, no! Surely it isn’t my job to make this decision?” It turns out that while technically it’s not my job, the practice is to consult the chief judge in situations like this if possible.

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