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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Harold Melton
Chief Justice of the Georgia Supreme Court
Assumed office
September 4, 2018
Preceded byHarris Hines
Associate Justice of the Georgia Supreme Court
Assumed office
July 1, 2005
Preceded byNorman S. Fletcher
Personal details
Howard David Melton

(1966-09-25) September 25, 1966 (age 53)
Washington, D.C., U.S.
Political partyRepublican
EducationAuburn University (BA)
University of Georgia (JD)

Harold David Melton (born September 25, 1966) is the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Georgia. He was first appointed to the Court by Governor Sonny Perdue on July 1, 2005, to fill a vacancy on the bench created by the retirement of Justice Norman S. Fletcher. His appointment marked the first time a Republican governor had made an appointment to the Supreme Court since 1868 when Governor Rufus B. Bullock selected Justices Joseph E. Brown and H. K. McCay.[1]

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Well, if I'm working I'm reading, we have briefs we have draft opinions, research, memos. And so on any given day if I walk into the office there's a pile that's been waiting for me. My job is to get through it, so when it comes time to vote on cases I'm prepared when it comes time to hear oral arguments on cases, I'm prepared and can ask intelligent questions that help me and help my fellow justices decide the case. Never thought I would be a lawyer, never thought I would be a judge until I became close to becoming one. I went to Auburn university and studied international business, stumbled into law school after that with a goal of studying international law. Took one course in international law and decided that's not what I wanted to do. From there, I focused on criminal prosecution, my first job after graduating law school was in the attorney general's office where I did property tax. And I did property tax for the first four or five years, the last few years in the attorney general office, I focused on consumer protection, went from there to work for the governor. The governor appointed me to the court in 2005. Well wherever you go to college, you want to learn and learn how to learn. That can be done well at any number of places. And Auburn of course did that. You're going to do your classwork, of course you're focused on that because that's why you're here. But if you go to your classroom, and then go home to your dorm or your apartment and hide, you're going to be miserable. And you're going to miss on all the opportunities to really grow. And so while you're here you want to grow academically, you want to grow socially, and you want to grow spiritually. So when the classroom is over, when class time is over, get out. Get involved in campus activities, get involved in organizational life. Everybody is pouring themselves into the university in some form or fashion, that's what makes it great. Find your way to pour in, you'll make the university better, and you'll grow so much more than you can ever imagine.


Early years and education

A 1984 graduate of Joseph Wheeler High School in Marietta, Georgia, Justice Melton received a Bachelor of Science degree from Auburn University and his Juris Doctor from the University of Georgia School of Law in 1991. He previously served as a Volunteer Leader of Young Life Ministries for 11 years, is currently a Board Member of Atlanta Youth Academy and the Director of Teen Ministry at Southwest Christian Fellowship Church.

While at Auburn University, Melton served as the Student Government Association President for the 1987-88 academic year. He was the first African-American student elected to that position in the history of the university. He was also the first ever "independent" (non-fraternity member) to be elected to that position.

Political and legal background

Prior to joining the Court, Justice Melton served as Executive Counsel to Governor Perdue. Before serving as Executive Counsel, Justice Melton spent eleven years in the Georgia Department of Law.[1]

Personal life

A native of Washington, D.C., Melton grew up in East Point, Georgia, and Marietta. He currently resides in Atlanta with his wife, Kimberly, and their three children.


  1. ^ a b "Chief Justice Harold D. Melton". Supreme Court of Georgia. Retrieved January 24, 2020.

External links

Legal offices
Preceded by
Harris Hines
Chief Justice of the Georgia Supreme Court
This page was last edited on 24 January 2020, at 16:41
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