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Clarence Thomas to attend Judicial Center dedication
Supreme Court justice will be second to visit Covington for courthouse milestone
Judicial Center Construction
Construction on an addition to the Newton County Judicial Building continues Wednesday, July 18, 2018. - photo by David Clemons

COVINGTON, Ga. — Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas will help dedicate the addition to the Newton County Judicial Center this fall.

Superior Court Judge Samuel D. Ozburn of the Alcovy Judicial Circuit announced Thomas’ visit Wednesday morning.

“Newton County is honored to host this nationally esteemed jurist and scholar on this special occasion,” Ozburn said.

Clarence Thomas
Clarence Thomas was appointed as an associate justice of the U.S. Supreme Court in 1991.
Thomas, 70, is a Georgia native. President George H.W. Bush nominated him to the Supreme Court and he was confirmed in 1991.

With Justice Anthony Kennedy having announced his intentions to retire as an associate justice later this year, Thomas will be the longest-tenured member of the Supreme Court by the time of his visit to Covington in the fall.

Thomas receives appeals from the Atlanta-based 11th Circuit Court of Appeals. Ozburn said he has been working since 2015 to secure Thomas’ visit.

A $12 million project to expand the Newton County Judicial Center is in its final months. Newton County has added thousands of residents since the Judicial Center opened in 1999, and the court system has added special courts for veterans, defendants with mental health concerns and defendants in a special drug program.

County voters approved the project in the 2011 special-purpose local option sales tax.

Details about Thomas’ visit, including the date and time, will be released as the time approaches.

Kennedy attended the dedication ofthe Newton County Judicial Center in 1999 at Ozburn’s invitation. At the time, it was the first new courthouse for Newton County in 115 years.

C-SPAN carried Kennedy’s remarks to a national audience.

Thomas grew up in the Pin Point community near Savannah. He has degrees from Holy Cross College and Yale Law School.