2 Supreme Court justices coming to Colorado Springs

August 21, 2010

Two U.S. Supreme Court justices will be in Colorado Springs this weekend when the 10th Circuit federal judges hold their annual conference at The Broadmoor hotel.

Justices Sonia Sotomayor and Ruth Bader Ginsburg are among the featured speakers at the three-day conference, which is expected to draw about 800 judges and lawyers.

The event is closed to the public, but C-SPAN is scheduled to broadcast Ginsburg’s talk live at 8 p.m. Friday.

Ginsburg will read a speech that her late husband, Martin Ginsburg, originally was slated to give titled, “How the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals got my wife her good job.”  Martin Ginsburg, a lawyer and law professor, died in June at the age of 78.

Following the speech, Ginsburg will take part in a “fireside chat” with questions from Nina Totenberg of National Public Radio and former 10th Circuit Judge Robert Henry.

While it’s relatively rare to have more than one Supreme Court justice in Colorado Springs at the same time, it has happened before. When the 10th Circuit held their conference at the Broadmoor in 2006, justices Stephen Breyer, Samuel Alito and Sandra Day O’Connor were among the speakers.

The conference has been held annually for decades and at one time it was mandated by law that  judges in the circuit gather once every other year to discuss court business, said 10th Circuit Executive David Tighe.

While no longer mandatory, the conference is held every year. In odd-numbered years, it is a judges-only event. In even-number years, lawyers who practice in the 10th Circuit are invited to attend. The locations vary, but the last three conferences have been held at the Broadmoor.

Tighe explained that part of the reason for the conference “is to get the lawyers and judges together in an informal atmosphere.” He said another reason is “to allow good intelligent discussion of contemporary legal topics.”

This year’s conference includes discussions such as “The Law of the War on Terror” and “Ten Thing No Trial Lawyer Should Do.”  On the lighter side, there’s also the “10th Circuit Sing-a-long.”

For more court coverage, visit “The Sidebar” blog









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