► U.S. Judge Dorothy Nelson of San Francisco: 2018 9th Circuit Geezer Runner-up Award Winner Print E-mail

U.S. Judge Dorothy Nelson of San Francisco: 2018 9th Circuit Geezer Runner-up Award Winner


The state of California presented Dorothy Wright Nelson with a law license in 1953 after she graduated from the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) School of Law.


This annual award is presented to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeal judge and/or judges who have distinguished themselves by refusing to retire from the bench even though in most instances they are holder than dirt.


The 2018 Geezer award winner’s attributes are as follows.

  • 91-years-old – DOB 1928
  • Appointed by Pres. Carter as judge for the 9th Circuit in 1979
  • Assumed senior judicial status on January 1, 1995

It should be noted that Dorothy’s choice to take on senior status meant that she was only required to work 10 hours a week while continuing to collect 100% of a full-time judge’s annual salary, which as of 2019 would be $220,600. Put simply, Dorothy has been required to work a mere 10 hours a week for the past twenty-four (24) years.


Had he retired in 1998 when she was eligible, he would have received a lifetime annual pension of $133,600. However, by taking on Senior Status in 1990, Dorothy was entitled to all future pay increases, which subsequently added $74,400.00 to his annual wage.


And more importantly, how would you like to have your work week reduced to 10 hours and still get paid for a 40-hour week? Sorry boys and girls, this obscene benefit is only available to federal judges.


I don’t know about you, but I would not be inclined to allow my legal matter to be decided by someone that is a part timer and 91-years-old. And that’s not to mean that I have anything against senior citizens. However, for Congress to allow this to happen is farcical at best.


And lastly, maybe this explains why they keep defibrillators, jumper cables and oxygen tanks near Dorothy’s courtroom.


As we speak (ca. December 2019), Dorothy continues to be employed as a part-time senior status judge for the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco, California.



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