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Remarks by Chief Justice Chase T. Rogers
on the occasion of Senior Associate Justice
David M. Borden's Final Day Hearing Cases
on the Connecticut Supreme Court
May 18, 2007
 
Chief Justice Chase T. RogersBefore we begin to hear today's cases, I would like to take a moment to mark a significant event in the history of this court. For seventeen years Justice David M. Borden has been a Supreme Court Justice. Today is the last day that he will sit to hear cases as a member of the Supreme Court, and we could not let that moment pass with pausing to thank him for his service - not only to the Court but to the people of this state. I am delighted that Justice Borden's wife, Judith, has joined us here this morning. Justice Borden frequently comments on the support his family has provided to him throughout his career, and so we welcome you here again today. We also welcome members of the Appellate Court, Superior Court judges, Judge Trial Referees, Judicial Branch staff and guests who join us as we reflect on Justice Borden's career.

In the short time I have had the privilege of being a colleague of Justice Borden's on this court, I have learned that he would prefer that we minimize the time devoted to these remarks and spend more time on the cases to be argued today. He has graciously consented to our request to honor him today, however, and so we will try to honor his request for brevity. But how do you honor that request when you are talking about the author of the first reported case of the Connecticut Appellate Court in 1983? Justice Borden was among the first five judges appointed to that court, and is the author of the case cited as 1 Conn. App. 1, Connecticut Natural Gas v. Department of Public Utility. I am sure I need not remind any of you that we are now reporting cases in volume 101 of the Appellate Court Reports. During his tenure at the Appellate Court, then-Judge Borden authored 326 opinions, over 300 of which were majority opinions. These opinions were instrumental in helping to shape the nascent jurisprudence for Connecticut's new intermediate appellate court.

Justice Borden can count some other firsts in his judicial career, including acting as the first Administrative Judge for the Appellate System. That task was taken on while he was an Appellate Court judge, and continued when he was appointed to the Supreme Court. The efficiency of the Appellate System is a credit to Justice Borden's vision. We have continued to build on the solid foundation he established while serving in that role.

Starting these remarks at the point the Judge Borden was appointed to the Appellate Court, however, skips over years of service on the Superior Court bench and Court of Common Pleas dating back to 1977. And prior to his three decades of judicial service, Justice Borden managed to complete a few small tasks while he was a practicing attorney. These included acting as Executive Director of the Commission to Revise the Criminal Statutes of Connecticut, which followed his role as chief draftsman of the Connecticut Penal Code. More than one person commenting on Justice Borden's career has noted that he is now challenged on the interpretation of statutes that he was instrumental in drafting. Of course he is also recognized as a scholar in the realm of statutory interpretation, so if he didn't write the statute, he can authoritatively speak to how it should be read. More recently, Justice Borden was the chair of the Connecticut Law Revision Task Force that prepared the Code of Evidence ultimately adopted by the Judges of the Superior Court. His legal career, as an attorney and as a Judge, has been nothing less than extraordinary.

So you can see that the difficulty in preparing remarks for this morning's ceremony was not in identifying Justice Borden's specific contributions to the development of the law in Connecticut. Rather, it was in selecting the highlights of his distinguished career to include in these remarks because there have been so many. Among those highlights are the numerous awards he has received - many in recognition of the accomplishments I just noted. The University of Connecticut Law Review Award for excellence in legal scholarship; the Raymond E. Baldwin Public Service Award from Quinnipiac College School of Law; the Connecticut Bar Association's Henry J. Naruk Award for Service to the Community in a Judicial Role. These are among the most prestigious awards in the legal community of our state. In less than two weeks, Justice Borden will again be honored, this time by the Connecticut Law Tribune as the recipient of the Publisher's Award for the Advancement of First Amendment Rights.

But it is Justice Borden's tenure as a Supreme Court Justice that is the focal point for today's ceremony, and so I have asked Justice Norcott, as the senior member of this court, to also make remarks today.

Remarks by Justice Norcott | Remarks by Justice Borden

 

 

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