Judge Richard Pollack, left, and Gov. Neil Abercrombie

BY JIM DOOLEY – Circuit Judge Richard Pollack has been appointed to the Hawaii Supreme Court by Gov. Neil Abercrombie.

Judge Richard Pollack, left, and Gov. Neil Abercrombie

Pollack, 61, has been a Circuit Judge since 2000 and served before that as head of the state Office of the Public Defender.

“I am confident that the core values of the constitution and the core values of Hawaii are well met in Judge Pollack,” Abercrombie said.

He said Pollack has “an extraordinarily deep and impressive record.”

The appointment must be approved by the state Senate.

“I have immeasurable respect for our Supreme Court and for our state Constitution,” Pollack said.

“I believe our Supreme Court’s most important function is to interpret and uphold our state Constitution, insuring that the law is applied in such a way that all people are treated fairly and equally,” he continued.

If confirmed by the Senate, Pollack would serve until age 70, although Abercrombie said he would like to see that age limit lifted from state law.

Pollack would replace Associate Justice James Duffy, who retired because of the 70-year age limit.

Abercrombie said the age limit for judges and justices makes the job “a dead end” that “actually deprives us of legal minds and administrative capacity that would be most welcome on the Supreme Court.”

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Jim Dooley joined the Hawaii Reporter staff as an investigative reporter in October 2010. Before that, he has worked as a print and television reporter in Hawaii since 1973, beginning as a wire service reporter with United Press International. He joined Honolulu Advertiser in 1974, working as general assignment and City Hall reporter until 1978. In 1978, he moved to full-time investigative reporting in for The Advertiser; he joined KITV news in 1996 as investigative reporter. Jim returned to Advertiser 2001, working as investigative reporter and court reporter until 2010. Reach him at Jim@hawaiireporter.com