The V.I. Supreme Court voted Friday morning to appoint Chief Justice Rhys Hodge to another three-year term as chief justice, according to a court statement.
Hodge called the meeting and vote to select a chief justice Friday to meet the terms of V.I. law requiring a majority of the justices to select a chief justice no less than 60 days before the end of the current chief justice’s term, according to the court’s announcement.
The other two justices, Maria Cabret and Ive Swan, both declined the position, leaving it to Hodge.
"The Supreme Court of the Virgin Islands has made a tremendous amount of progress in the last seven years and I was pleased to be an instrumental part of that progress," Hodge said in the court’s statement. "Although we achieved our goal last year of attaining direct review of our decisions by the United States Supreme Court, much work remains to be done.”
Hodge said, “The Virgin Islands Judiciary must remain responsive to Virgin Islanders and must continue to strengthen services to the public in a cost-effective manner. I convey my thanks to the other justices of the court and the employees who continue to support me and lend their talents to our growing organization."
Cabret congratulated Hodge, saying: "His stellar performance has steadfastly guided the Supreme Court of the Virgin Islands to the amazing achievements it has made within such a remarkably short time, and I know he will continue his outstanding efforts to make our Supreme Court the best among the best and to improve the administration of justice in the territory."
Hodge’s new three-year term begins Dec. 19 and will end Dec. 18, 2016.
In 1999 Hodge was confirmed as judge of the Territorial Court, now the Superior Court, and named presiding judge in 2006. He was serving his second six-year term on the bench when he was nominated, approved and sworn in as a Supreme Court Justice, also in 2006. (See related link below)