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Kennard1.jpgCalifornia Supreme Court Associate Justice Joyce Kennard has announced her intention to leave the state's highest court later this year.

Kennard, 72, plans to resign effective April 5, giving Gov. Jerry Brown his second opportunity to fill a California Supreme Court vacancy after having appointed Justice Goodwin Liu in 2011.

Brown's selection to replace Kennard will be subject to confirmation by the Commission on Judicial Appointments - a body composed of State Supreme Court Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye, Attorney General Kamala Harris and Justice Joan Dempsey Klein - and would then go before voters during the following election. The successor would be up for a potential re-election in 2018, at the end of Kennard's current term.

The April 5 resignation date will mark the 25th anniversary of Gov. George Deukmejian originally appointing Kennard, back in 1989. She subsequently won re-election in 1990, 1994 and 2006.

"The state and its people have been very well served by Justice Kennard and her independence and intellectual fortitude have left a lasting mark on the Court," Brown said in a statement.

PHOTO: Associate Justice Joyce Kennard, in 2008. Associated Press/Paul Sakuma


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