All eight Superior Court judges — and one magistrate — up for judicial review this year will retain their positions on the bench for another six-year term.
Among that group is Judge Samuel Hoar, who faced scrutiny during the retention process after two female attorneys accused him of sexist, aggressive and condescending behavior in the courtroom. He was retained by a ballot vote of 129-36 in the Joint Assembly.
Hoar developed a plan for his own rehabilitation that includes mentoring from two retired judges, reporting to the state’s chief judge, and attending a training at the New York State Judicial Institute. Additionally, Hoar will participate in implicit bias training, along with all Vermont judges.
“Judge Hoar has reviewed all this and taken the situation to heart very seriously,” said Sen. Alice Nitka, D-Windsor. “Judge Hoar has skills and value to the judiciary and people of Vermont who are heard before him.”
The Vermont Bar Association has revised the process for overseeing the judiciary, with a check-in three years into each judge’s tenure to identify areas of concern. Nitka, chair of the Joint Committee on Judicial Retention, said judges strongly support the change.