Judge set to retire

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Superior Court Judge Neal W. Dickert is hanging up his robes and returning to private practice.

<B>Neal Dickert</B>: Judge was elected to the Augusta Judicial Circuit Superior Court in 1996 and has run unopposed ever since.  Special
Special
Neal Dickert: Judge was elected to the Augusta Judicial Circuit Superior Court in 1996 and has run unopposed ever since.

In an interview with The Augusta Chronicle on Friday, Judge Dickert, 61, said he was ready for a change in his professional life.

"I have put my heart and soul and mind in this job for almost 11 years ... It's a tough job. It begins to wear on you after a while," he said.

Judge Dickert was first elected to the Augusta Judicial Circuit Superior Court bench in 1996, defeating Judge Bettieanne Hart in a runoff. Ms. Hart was appointed by the governor to fill a new judgeship created the year before.

Since winning office, Judge Dickert has run unopposed.

The judge said he is returning to his former law firm - Hull, Towill, Norman, Barrett & Salley - on Nov. 1.

Judge Dickert said he wrote a letter to Gov. Sonny Perdue on Friday, alerting the governor of his intention.

It will be up to the governor to appoint a lawyer to finish Judge Dickert's term, which runs through 2008.

The seat will be on the ballot for the Nov. 4, 2008, election, which is also a presidential election.

Judge Dickert is one of eight Superior Court judges who preside over civil, domestic and criminal cases in Richmond, Columbia and Burke counties.

Reach Sandy Hodson at (706) 823-3226 or sandy.hodson@augustachronicle.com.

WHAT'S NEXT:

The governor's judicial nominations committee will investigate and interview attorneys interested in being appointed to the judgeship. The committee will submit a short list of candidates to the governor, who can pick one of those candidates or select someone else to be the next Superior Court judge.

Comments (5) Add comment
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hangemhigh
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hangemhigh 08/18/07 - 08:51 am
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The Court will be losing a

The Court will be losing a good judge as well as a good man.

luckie
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luckie 08/18/07 - 08:56 am
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I just wish that so many of

I just wish that so many of these key leaders would not be quitters and complete their terms. We have had so many interims here and there. In the military, a contract is a contract. You cannot choose to resign. People need to fulfill their terms of service. We should only have interims here and there due to death or illness. Just my opinion.

genbartow
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genbartow 08/18/07 - 09:26 am
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judges usually step down

judges usually step down during their term so the governor can make an appointment, who then will run as an incumbent almost assuring his election.

LBenedict
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LBenedict 08/18/07 - 12:03 pm
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good point tech!

good point tech!

fd1962
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fd1962 08/18/07 - 03:59 pm
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Why not just install a robot?
Unpublished

Why not just install a robot? The Judge has no obligation to share his reasons with you two second-guessers. I guess prior completion of TWO terms well-served is offset by this 'inconvenience' to your sensibilities?

TruthJusticeFaithHope
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TruthJusticeFaithHope 08/20/07 - 10:53 am
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Neil Dickert has been a great

Neil Dickert has been a great judge. Making superior court judgements is not easy, people's lives and the safety of the community often rest upon the judge's efforts to thoroughly know and understand all of the facts. Mr. Dickert always went the extra mile in this regard. Thank you for your service Mr. Dickert. You will be missed.

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