Burgum appoints new North Dakota Supreme Court Judge

Photo by: Governor Doug Burgum - Facebook
Photo by: Governor Doug Burgum - Facebook

(Bismarck, ND) -- Judge Douglas Bahr is set to be a North Dakota Supreme Court justice.

Governor Doug Burgum announced Monday that he had appointed Bahr to the state's highest court.

“Judge Bahr will make an excellent addition to the North Dakota Supreme Court with his broad legal background in the public and private sectors and his extensive experience at both the state and federal levels,” Burgum said. “His analytical skills, compassion, high integrity and character, sense of fundamental fairness and deep understanding of the law will serve our state’s highest court well.”

Bahr earned his law degree in 1990 from the University of South Dakota School of Law in Vermillion and a bachelor’s degree in family science in 1987 from Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah. He current chairs the North Dakota Courts’ Personnel Policy Board and is a member of the judicial Joint Procedure Committee. He also is a former president of the State Bar Association of North Dakota and its ethics committee, and a former bar association president for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit.

In addition to his work as an attorney, Bahr taught business law and government courses as an adjunct faculty member at Bismarck State College from 2008 to 2016. He and his wife, Laura, have six children.

Bahr's appointment fills the vacancy created by the upcoming retirement of longtime Justice Gerald VandeWalle.  VandeWalle has served for 44 years on the Supreme Court, including 27 years as chief justice. He is stepping down January 31st.