Supreme Court Appoints Retired Judge Vanessa Jackson As Senior Judge

The Tennessee Supreme Court has appointed former Judge Vanessa Agee Jackson as a senior judge for a term of four years, effective September 1, 2023. Judge Jackson previously was a circuit court judge in the 14th Judicial District, which includes Coffee County, from 2009 to 2022. In that position, she had jurisdiction over civil, criminal, and chancery cases.

 “The Supreme Court is delighted that Judge Jackson has agreed to serve Tennesseans in this new capacity,” Chief Justice Roger A. Page said. “She is the first female to be a senior judge in the state and brings a broad and diverse judicial experience to the position. She has demonstrated a fair and even judicial temperament and commitment to the administration of justice.”

Judge Jackson was first appointed to the judicial bench in 2009. She was then elected by voters in 2010 and 2014. She retired from her circuit judge position in June of 2022.

“I am honored the Supreme Court selected me for the position,” Judge Jackson said. “Retirement is fun, but I miss my judicial colleagues and working to find the best resolution in tough cases. Cases need to be administered efficiently and fairly, and I am happy to step in and assist where needed.”

Judge Jackson earned her bachelor’s and law degrees from the University of Tennessee – Knoxville. She began her career as the in-house counsel for First Federal Savings & Loan Association in Tullahoma. She then practiced law with the firm of Henry & McCord before joining the firm of Hull, Ray, Rieder, Ewell, Lane & Ridner, P.A.

Judge Jackson served on the Coffee County Election Commission for 20 years and is a former member of the Tullahoma Industrial Board. She was previously recognized as the Business Woman's Club Professional Woman of the Year. She was a teacher of the Evans Friendship Class of the First United Methodist Church.

Under Tennessee Code Ann. § 17-2-302, the Supreme Court may appoint senior judges when one or more judicial districts require additional resources and the appointment will promote the effective administration of justice in the state. Senior judges can serve by designation of the chief justice in any judicial district in the state and often travel as needed. There are currently six senior judges located across the state.