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South Dakota Supreme Court

Chief Justice David E. Gilbertson

Chief Justice David E. Gilbertson Chief Justice Gilbertson was elected to a four-year term as Chief Justice by the members of the Supreme Court in September 2001 and was reelected to a second four-year term as Chief Justice by the members of the Supreme Court in June 2005, a third four-year term in June 2009 and a fourth four-year term in June 2013. He was appointed to the Supreme Court in April 1995 to represent the Fifth Supreme Court District, which includes Brown, Butte, Campbell, Clark, Codington, Corson, Day, Dewey, Edmunds, Faulk, Grant, Harding, Marshall, McPherson, Perkins, Potter, Roberts, Spink, Walworth and Ziebach counties, and was retained by the voters in the 1998 and 2006 general elections. Chief Justice Gilbertson received his undergraduate degree from South Dakota State University in 1972 and his Juris Doctor from the University of South Dakota, School of Law in 1975. He engaged in private practice from 1975 until his appointment to the circuit court bench in 1986. During this time he also served as a deputy state’s attorney and as an attorney for several municipalities and school districts. He is past President of the South Dakota Judges Association; and is a member of the Glacial Lakes Bar Association, the Brown County Bar Association and the South Dakota Bar Association. He is the First Vice-President of the Conference of Chief Justices and chairs its Task Force on Politics and Judicial Selection/Compensation. He was a member of the Board of Directors of the Conference of Chief Justices from 2005-2007. In 2006, he was the recipient of the Distinguished Service Award from the National Center for State Courts for his defense of judicial independence. He serves on the Judicial-Bar Liaison Committee of the State Bar Association and has served as a Court Counselor at South Dakota Boys State since 1995. He and wife Deb have four children.

Justice John K. Konenkamp

Justice John K. Konenkamp Justice Konenkamp represents the First Supreme Court District, which includes Custer, Lawrence, Meade and Pennington counties. After serving in the United States Navy, he attended the University of South Dakota, School of Law, graduating in 1974. He practiced in Rapid City as a Deputy State’s Attorney until 1977. He then engaged in private practice until 1984 when he was appointed Circuit Judge. In May 1988, he became Presiding Judge of the Seventh Circuit. He was appointed to the Supreme Court in 1994 by former Governor Walter Dale Miller after ten years on the trial bench and was retained by the voters in the 1998 and 2006 general elections. He is a member of the National Advisory Council of the American Judicature Society, an organization devoted to addressing the problems and concerns of the justice system. Justice Konenkamp and his wife, Geri, are former foster parents for the Department of Social Services. Justice Konenkamp has served on a number of boards advancing the improvement of the legal system, including the South Dakota Equal Justice Commission and the Alternative Dispute Resolution Committee. Justice Konenkamp and his wife have two children, Kathryn and Matthew.

Justice Steven L. Zinter

Justice Steven L. Zinter Justice Zinter, of Pierre, was appointed to the Supreme Court on April 2, 2002 by former Governor William J. Janklow. He received his B.S. degree from the University of South Dakota and his Juris Doctor from the University of South Dakota School of Law. Upon graduation from law school, Justice Zinter practiced law as an Assistant Attorney General for the State of South Dakota. From 1978 to 1986 he was engaged in the private practice of law. Justice Zinter also served as the Hughes County State’s Attorney. He was appointed as a Circuit Judge in 1987 and served in that capacity until 1997. In 1997 he was appointed Presiding Judge of the Sixth Judicial Circuit and served in that capacity until his appointment to the Supreme Court to represent the Third Supreme Court District, which includes Beadle, Bennett, Brookings, Buffalo, Deuel, Haakon, Hamlin, Hand, Hughes, Hyde, Jackson, Jerauld, Jones, Kingsbury, Lake, Mellette, Miner, Moody, Sanborn, Shannon, Stanley, Sully and Todd counties. Justice Zinter is a member of the American Bar Association, the State Bar Association, and the South Dakota Judges Association. He was a past President of the South Dakota Judges Association and a past trustee of the Harry S. Truman Foundation along with a number of other boards and commissions. Justice Zinter and his wife have two children and three grandchildren.

Justice Glen A. Severson

Justice Glen A. Severson Justice Severson, represents the Second Supreme Court District, which includes Minnehaha County. He attended the University of South Dakota receiving a B.S. in 1972 and the University of South Dakota, School of Law receiving a Juris Doctor degree in 1975. He was a member of the Fingerson and Severson Law Firm from 1983 to 1992 and served as the Huron City Attorney from 1977-1992 and a Beadle County Deputy States Attorney in 1975. He was appointed a Circuit Judge in the Second Circuit in 1993 and served as Presiding Judge from 2002 until his appointment to the Supreme Court. Justice Severson was appointed to the Supreme Court in 2009 after sixteen years on the trial bench. He is a member of the American Bar Association, South Dakota Bar Association and Second Circuit Bar Association. He served in the South Dakota Air National Guard from 1967-1973. He was a member of the South Dakota Board of Water and Natural Resources (1986-1992) and has served on a number of other boards and commissions. Justice Severson and his wife Mary have two children, Thomas and Kathryn.

Justice Lori S. Wilbur

Justice Lori S. Wilbur Justice Wilbur, appointed to the Supreme Court on August 16, 2011 by Governor Dennis Daugaard, represents the Fourth Supreme Court District, which includes Aurora, Bon Homme, Brule, Charles Mix, Clay, Davison, Douglas, Gregory, Hanson, Hutchinson, Lincoln, Lyman, McCook, Tripp, Turner, Union, and Yankton. She attended the University of South Dakota receiving a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1974 and the University of South Dakota, School of Law, receiving a Juris Doctor degree in 1977. She served as a law clerk for the South Dakota Supreme Court for Honorable Laurence J. Zastrow; was an assistant Attorney General; General Counsel, South Dakota Board of Regents; Staff Attorney, South Dakota Legislative Research Council; and Legal Counsel, South Dakota Bureau of Personnel. She is a member and past President of the South Dakota Judges Association, past member and Secretary of the Judicial Qualifications Commission and a member of the Rosebud Bar Association. She served as a Law-Trained Magistrate Judge, Sixth Circuit 1992-1999; Circuit Court Judge, Sixth Circuit, 1999-2011; and Presiding Judge, Sixth Circuit, 2007 – 2011. Justice Wilbur has two daughters and one grandson.



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