SuperTalk Mississippi

Two Appointments to Courts: Special Election to Happen

JACKSON, MISS– Two appointments were made by Governor Phil Bryant Tuesday to cover two judicial vacancies. 

Governor Bryant appoints Senator Will Longwitz to the 20th Judicial District court for Rankin and Madison Counties, and former U.S. Attorney James Greenlee to the State Court of Appeals.

Since Longwitz is a current senator, a special election will be held to fill his senatorial seat as he takes the bench as judge.

Former U.S. Attorney James Greenlee is coming out of retirement to serve the Mississippi Court of Appeals.

Mississippi Supreme Court Chief Justice Bill Waller Jr. today issued the following statement with regard to the judicial appointments of Judge Jim Greenlee to the Court of Appeals and Judge Will Longwitz to the Madison County Court:

“I welcome Judge Jim Greenlee and Judge Will Longwitz to the bench. I look forward to their being sworn in so that they may assume their duties on the Court of Appeals and the Madison County Court. Both courts have high volume caseloads. The judiciary must operate at full strength so that the work of the courts is handled efficiently and expeditiously.”

Longwitz’ appointment is effective Wednesday, Jan. 20. He replaces Steve Ratcliff, who recently was elected circuit judge for the 20th Judicial District that includes Madison and Rankin counties. Longwitz will resign his Senate seat, which he has held since 2012. Gov. Bryant will set a special election as soon as possible to fill the vacancy.

“I am humbled and honored by Governor Bryant’s faith and confidence,” Longwitz said. “I look forward to serving the people of Madison County in this role, and to working for the fair and efficient administration of justice in our state.”

Greenlee’s appointment is effective Wednesday, Jan. 20. Greenlee replaces James D. Maxwell, who Gov. Bryant recently appointed to the Mississippi Supreme Court. Greenlee will represent Northeast Mississippi’s District 1.

“To be considered for this position is an honor,” Greenlee said. “To be actually appointed by Governor Bryant as a judge of the Court of Appeals is a humbling experience for which I am truly grateful. My prayer is that I may serve diligently, seeking justice and truth, always mindful that compassion and humility are virtuous. I would hope that others would help me live up to that prayer.”


Judge Jim Greenlee


Judge Will Longwitz

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