Augusta’s U.S. District Court Judge J. Randal Hall takes over officially as chief judge Thursday

U.S. District Court Judge J. Randal Hall takes over as chief judge of the Southern District of Georgia on Thursday.


During a ceremony Thursday afternoon, U.S. District Court Chief Judge Lisa Godbey Wood will hand over the duties of the chief judgeship to Hall. It will be the first time a chief judge has been sworn in at the 101-year-old U.S. District Courthouse in Augusta.

As chief judge, Hall will take on the administrative and operational duties for the Southern District, which is composed of 43 counties with six federal courthouses. Hall will be responsible for personnel, budgets and the local rules of the court. He also will serve as the contact for the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals and the U.S. Courts Administrative Office, he said.

Hall practiced law in the Augusta area for 26 years before being selected by President George W. Bush to serve as a federal judge. He was sworn into office on May 1, 2008. He will serve as the chief judge for the next seven years.

“The nice thing about being on the court is that my colleagues are already there to assist,” Hall said, adding that because they have already served the district as chief judge, he believes it is his time to step up.

Hall, 58, said he has no plans to retire anytime soon from a job that gives him satisfaction every day. A federal judgeship is a lifetime appointment.


Reach Sandy Hodson at or (706) 823-3226.



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