Recktenwald, Kim up for judgeships
A senator promised tough questioning of two appointees to the Judiciary
Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs Director Mark Recktenwald can expect a fair but thorough hearing on his nomination to become the next chief judge of the Intermediate Court of Appeals, a key state senator said.
Recktenwald was nominated to the post yesterday by Gov. Linda Lingle. Lingle also nominated Honolulu Deputy Prosecutor Glenn J. Kim as a judge to Oahu Circuit Court.
» Age: 51
» Appointed: As chief judge, Intermediate Court of Appeals
» Current position: Director, Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs
» Prior experience: Assistant U.S. attorney; partner, Marr Hipp Jones & Wang; associate, Goodsill Anderson Quinn & Stifel; law clerk, U.S. District Court Chief Judge Harold Fong
GLENN J. KIM
» Age: 57
» Appointed: As Oahu Circuit Court judge
» Current position: Deputy prosecuting attorney, City and County of Honolulu
» Prior experience: Law clerk, Chief Justice Ronald Moon; judicial extern, U.S. District Court Judge Alan Kay; intern, Office of the Public Defender
Source: Office of the Governor
Both are subject to Senate confirmation.
"They can expect a fair hearing -- a hearing that will go into great detail on their abilities to engage themselves as judges and (one that) will try to do as thorough a job as possible," said Senate Judiciary Chairman Clayton Hee (D, Kahuku-Kaneohe).
Hee said he expects to delve into the nominees' "experience as lawyers and their experience as administrators."
Recktenwald, 51, was nominated to replace Judge James Burns, who is approaching the mandatory retirement age of 70. Kim, 57, would succeed Judge Marcia Waldorf, who is retiring of her own accord.
"I'm deeply honored and grateful to the governor for her faith in me, selecting me for this position and for the chance to further serve the people of this community," Kim said.
Recktenwald has gone through the Senate confirmation process before, when appointed by Lingle four years ago to his current job.
"I respect the role the Senate has in reviewing the qualifications of judicial nominees and look forward to the confirmation process," he said.
Lingle's appointments have not always sailed through Senate confirmation.
Two years ago the Higher Education Committee, headed by Hee, rejected two interim nominees and one student appointee to the University of Hawaii Board of Regents.
Also in 2005, Hee, then vice chairman of the Judiciary Committee, was the only senator who voted against the confirmation of Rick Bissen, who was a deputy attorney general nominated to Maui Circuit Court.
Bissen had been questioned over two days and sharply criticized by senators for failing to disclose an unfavorable court ruling that criticized his legal performance. Bissen was eventually confirmed.
Hee has already this year warned potential nominees that anything less than full disclosure could prompt a confirmation fight.
Hee said yesterday that he had heard some "bits and pieces" of complaints on Recktenwald's handling of the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs, but "I think he should be given the benefit of any doubt until something substantial might appear."
Recktenwald said he plans to work with Hee and the committee to "provide them with all the information they need to be able to make an informed decision about me."