The United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit has announced that Judge Richard A. Posner has retired from the bench, effective September 2, 2017.
Judge Posner, who is 78 years old, was appointed to the court in 1981 and previously served as its Chief Judge from 1993 to 2000.
Chief Judge Diane Wood said of Judge Posner:
It is with great regret that I announce the retirement of Judge Richard A. Posner after nearly thirty-six years on the Seventh Circuit. For more than 50 years Judge Posner has been one of the leading public intellectuals in the United States – indeed, in the world. He is one of the most distinguished people to ever sit on the federal bench. His opinions have had an impact around the world. He has produced an unparalleled body of scholarship – books, articles, and public commentary – covering virtually every legal topic that can be imagined. The impact Judge Posner has had on this Court is immeasurable, and it is with the deepest gratitude that we wish him well.
Judge Posner stated:
After nearly thirty-six years, I have decided to retire from the Seventh Circuit. It has been a tremendous honor to serve on this Court. I thank my colleagues, past and present, for the opportunity to work with them.
During my time on the bench, I have authored more than 3,300 opinions and presided over many trials as a volunteer judge in the district court. I am proud to have promoted a pragmatic approach to judging during my time on the Court, and to have had the opportunity to apply my view that judicial opinions should be easy to understand and that judges should focus on the right and wrong in every case. I look forward to continuing to teach and publish, with a particular focus on social justice reform.