National court, legal leaders celebrated with Warren E. Burger Society honor

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National court, legal leaders celebrated with Warren E. Burger Society honor

Williamsburg, Va. (Nov. 21) -- Five nationally recognized leaders have been inducted into the National Center for State Courts’ (NCSC) Warren E. Burger Society.

Named for the NCSC visionary and former Chief Justice of the United States, the Burger Society honors individuals who have used their time, talent and support to advance the organization in exceptional ways. This year’s inductees were celebrated at an event in Washington, D.C., Nov. 17.


The 2022 inductees include:

  • Eileen Fitzgerald, a national affordable housing leader who recently led the Wells Fargo Foundation’s housing affordability philanthropy efforts. Fitzgerald has dedicated much of her career to advancing affordable housing through her leadership roles at Stewards of Affordable Housing for the Future, NeighborWorks America and the Fannie Mae Foundation. She has also worked for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Rural Housing Service and held positions in Virginia and Maryland state governments.
  • Laurie K. Givens, Administrative Director, Kentucky Administrative Office of the Courts. Since 2009, Givens is responsible for the administrative arm of the branch’s 406 elected justices, judges and circuit court clerks and 3,400 non-elected employees. Givens is a past president of the Conference of State Court Administrators (COSCA) and served as vice chair of the National Center for State Courts Board of Directors. She is an active member of NCSC’s Blueprint for Racial Justice steering committee and co-chaired the National Task Force on Fines, Fees and Bail Practices.
  • Retired Utah Supreme Court Justice Constandinos "Deno" Himonas. Appointed to the Utah Supreme Court in 2015, Himonas was a trial court judge in Utah’s Third District Court for more than 10 years following 15 years working as a litigator for the law firm of Jones, Waldo, Holbrook & McDonough where he focused on complex civil litigation. He served on the state’s high court for seven years before his 2022 retirement and is currently a partner with Wilson Sonsini in Salt Lake City in their litigation and appellate practices.
  • Thomas C. Leighton, Vice President, Content Acquisition and Judicial Relations, Thomson Reuters. Leighton, who has been with West Publishing/Thomson Reuters for 33 years, leads content acquisition and judicial relations for the company’s legal and tax businesses in the U.S., Canada and United Kingdom. He sits on a number of law-related non-profit organization boards including the American Inns of Court Foundation Board of Trustees, New York University Law School’s Institute of Judicial Administration Board of Advisors, United States Supreme Court Historical Society, Minnesota Supreme Court Historical Society, National Association of Women Judges Resource Board and Books for Africa Jack Mason Law & Democracy Initiative Advisory Board.
  • Jeffrey P. Minear, retired Counselor to the Chief Justice of the United States. Appointed in 2006, Minear served a record tenure as Counselor to the Chief Justice prior to his retirement in September 2022. He served as chief of staff, supporting the Chief Justice in both judicial and non-judicial activities and acting as a liaison to the executive and legislative branches and numerous judicial organizations, foreign courts, and visiting dignitaries. Minear’s academic appointments include teaching positions at the Georgetown University Law Center, Washington and Lee Law School, University of Utah College of Law, and Georgetown University Department of Government.