On Thursday, February 12, 2015, I had the pleasure of attending the HBA Appellate Section’s luncheon which featured a panel of two past Texas Supreme Court Chief Justices (CJ Wallace B. Jefferson and CJ Thomas R. Phillips) and the present Chief Justice Nathan L. Hecht. Chief Justices Jefferson and Phillips have returned to private practice, but shared fond memories of their time on the court. Justice Phillips in particular shared anecdotes about when the court was so budget-strapped that it did not even have a copier. Justice Jefferson was praised for his work in spearheading the effort to establish the Equal Access to Justice Commission.
My favorite moment, however, was when Chief Justice Hecht jokingly noted that while he thinks the world of Chief Justice Wallace, “he’s sometimes wrong.” It was also noted that Chief Justice Hecht and former Justice Doggett did not often agree and that the Justices refer to each other in conference as “Justice” and not by first names to help maintain professional decorum.