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Judge John Greenwood to retire on Aug. 1


Southeast District Court Judge John Greenwood has announced he plans to retire Aug. 1.

Greenwood submitted a letter of resignation Monday to Gov. Doug Burgum and Gerald VandeWalle, chief justice of the North Dakota Supreme Court.

Greenwood was appointed to the Southeast District Court Judgeship No. 1 in 1999 by then-Gov. Ed Schafer. He was elected to the position in 2002 and re-elected in 2006 and 2012.

“It has been my honor and privilege to serve the citizens of the Southeast Judicial District and the State of North Dakota as District Judge since 1999,” Greenwood wrote in his letter.

Greenwood, 67, had a private practice as an attorney in Jamestown from 1977 to 1986. In 1993 he was appointed Stutsman County state’s attorney, then was elected to the position in 1994. He was re-elected in 1998.

Penny Miller, clerk of the North Dakota Supreme Court, said in an email the North Dakota Supreme Court had not received an official notice from the governor’s office about Greenwood’s retirement as of Thursday afternoon. Once the court receives the official notice of vacancy, the court has 90 days to determine if Greenwood’s judgeship will be filled, transfer the position to another jurisdiction or eliminate the position.

Miller wrote if the North Dakota Supreme Court orders the judgeship to be filled, the governor will convene the Judicial Nominating Committee. Within 60 days of the committee convening, the committee sends the governor a list with two to seven names. The governor then has 30 days to fill the vacancy, return the list back to the committee and have the committee reconvene to come up with more names, or call for a special election.