Former Texas Supreme Court Chief Justice Wallace Jefferson has been named the 2014 Texan of the Year by the Texas Legislative Conference, the well-known annual statewide forum that is marking its 48th year next March.
Jefferson will be presented with the award Thursday evening, March 27, at a special reception in his honor at the New Braunfels Civic/Convention Center. He will be joining an array of prominent past honorees since 1974 including Barbara Jordan, Laura Bush, David Robinson and John Connally.
The Texas Legislative Conference is a nonpartisan organization of Texas business and political leaders who meet annually inNew Braunfels to focus on public policy issues. This year’s topics on March 28 will include Water and Transportation Infrastructure, the Eagle Ford Shale and a media panel to review the March primaries and runoffs.
According to Conference Chair and former State Senator Jeff Wentworth, Jefferson was appointed to the Court in 2001 by Governor Rick Perry and was subsequently elected to the bench in 2002 by the voters of Texas. He was named chief justice by the governor in 2004, becoming the 26th chief justice of the state. In 2006, he was elected chief justice; he was re-elected to a full term in 2008. Jefferson made Texas judicial history – he was the first African-American justice and the first African-American chief justice of the Texas Supreme Court.
During his time on the bench, Jefferson served as president of the Conference of Chief Justices, an association of chief justices from the 50 states and U.S. territories. Prior to joining the Supreme Court, Jefferson was a partner in San Antonio-based appellate-specialty firm Crofts, Callaway & Jefferson, where he successfully argued two cases before the United States Supreme Court. He is a member of the American Law Institute and is certified in civic appellate law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization.
A graduate of the James Madison College at Michigan State University and the University of Texas School of Law, Jefferson is the namesake for Wallace B. Jefferson Middle School in San Antonio. He has recently been honored with the 2013 Texas Exes’ Distinguished Alumnus Award.
Information on registration and tickets for both the Thursday evening, March 27 Texan of the Year reception and the Friday, March 28 half-day conference program may be obtained from the Greater New Braunfels Chamber of Commerce at (830) 608-2807 or by emailing email@example.com .