Susan Denham

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
The Hon. Mrs. Justice
Susan Denham
Chief Justice of Ireland
Incumbent
Assumed office
25 July 2011
Nominated by Government of Ireland
Appointed by Mary McAleese
Preceded by John L. Murray
Judge of the Supreme Court
Incumbent
Assumed office
1992
Nominated by Government of Ireland
Appointed by Mary Robinson
Personal details
Born 1945
Dublin, Ireland
Nationality Irish
Spouse(s) Brian Denham
Children 4
Alma mater Trinity College, Dublin,
Columbia Law School,
King's Inns
Profession Barrister, Judge
Religion Church of Ireland

Susan Denham (née Gageby; born 1945) is the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Ireland. She was appointed by the President of Ireland on 25 July 2011. She is the first female to hold the position, and is the longest-serving member of the court.[1][2]

Early and personal life[edit]

Susan Gageby was born in Dublin in 1945 and educated at Alexandra College, Dublin; Trinity College, Dublin; the King's Inns and the Law School of Columbia University, New York City (LL.M. 1972).[3][4] She is the daughter of the former editor of The Irish Times, Douglas Gageby; and the sister of leading criminal barrister Patrick Gageby. She is married to Brian Denham and they have four children. From 1996 to 2010, Denham was a Pro-Chancellor of Trinity College, Dublin. She is a member of the Church of Ireland.

Legal career[edit]

She practised as a barrister from 1971 and became a Senior Counsel in 1987. She worked on the Midland circuit until 1979, following which she was based in Dublin. She was involved in a number of leading cases while a junior barrister and a Senior Counsel particularly in the area of judicial review. She became a High Court judge in 1991. In 1992 she was the first woman appointed to the Supreme Court.

From 1995–98, she chaired the Working Group on a Courts Commission, which was responsible for a significant reform of the organisation of the courts since the foundation of the state.[2] It led to the establishment of the Courts Service.[4] She was on the Interim Board of the Court Service and served on the Board of the Court Service from its inception, and chaired the board from 2001–04.[4]

From 2006, she has chaired the Working Group on a Court of Appeal. The report of the group was published by the government in August 2009. It recommended the establishment of a general Court of Appeal in Ireland.[4]

She wrote the opinion in McD v. L (2009), upholding the parental rights of a sperm donor.

She is the first woman and first Protestant to hold the office of Chief Justice.[5]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Susan Denham to become Ireland’s first female Chief Justice". TheJournal.ie. 19 July 2011. 
  2. ^ a b Carr, Aoife (19 July 2011). "New Chief Justice appointed". The Irish Times. 
  3. ^ "Susan Denham". LLM Uniiks. 21 July 2011. Retrieved 19 August 2011. 
  4. ^ a b c d "Current Judges of the Supreme Court". The Supreme Court of Ireland. Retrieved 19 July 2011. 
  5. ^ "Susan Denham nominated for top Irish legal post". BBC News. 20 July 2011. 
Legal offices
Preceded by
John L. Murray
Chief Justice of Ireland
2011–present
Incumbent