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State of Oklahoma

Methods of Judicial Selection: Oklahoma

Judicial Nominating Commissions

Whenever there is a vacancy on the supreme court, the court of criminal appeals, or the court of civil appeals, or an interim vacancy on the district court, the judicial nominating commission submits a list of three nominees to the governor. The governor must appoint one of the nominees to fill the vacancy.

The judicial nominating commission is composed of fifteen members.  The commission was established by Article 7B of the Oklahoma Constituiton. The governor appoints one non-lawyer member from each of Oklahoma's six congressional districts. No more than three may be of the same political party. The Oklahoma Bar Association elects one of its members from each congressional district. These commission members serve staggered six year terms. The three remaining members are non-lawyer members-at-large. The speaker of the Oklahoma house of representatives and the Oklahoma senate president pro tempore each appoint one lawyer member-at-large, and the remaining member-at-large is selected by at least eight commission members. Members-at-large serve two year terms. Commission members select a chair who serves for one year.

According to a consitutional amendment approved by voters in 2010, non-laywer members may not have a lawyer in their immediate family.

For more information, see Judicial Merit Selection: Current Status.