Student Court appoints new deputy chief justice

Media Credit: Grace Hromin | Senior Photo Editor

Ian Lam, who has served as an associate justice since May, said he would collaborate with the chief justice to handle the court's administrative tasks as part of his new role.

The Student Court selected a new deputy chief justice and opened applications for the court’s registrar position last week before the kickoff of the next school year.

The court named second-year law student and associate justice Ian Lam as the deputy chief justice as part of a general order issued and filed last Thursday. Lam said he would collaborate with Chief Justice Yun-Da Tsai on administrative tasks, like updating the judicial handbook, organizing the court’s Google Drive and setting up applications for the registrar position.

The court’s justices swore in Lam as an associate justice in May after adopting the SA’s updated bylaws, which increased the number of justices from five to seven. Lam said the court’s most critical role is to work for the students, including any individuals or student organizations looking to file a complaint.

“We’re here to serve the student body, and we’re here to make ourselves as accessible as possible,” Lam said in an interview. “People should feel free to reach out and have any questions, but we are really here to serve, and that’s what we’re planning to do with our positions.”

One of the court’s associate justices resigned last month, leaving one vacancy for SA President Brandon Hill to fill on the 7-person bench. Lam said the empty seat does not negatively affect the court, and justices will be ready to swear in Hill’s nominee following confirmation from the SA Senate.

“It’s best to have a full court, and we are ready for when President Hill will nominate a new justice,” Lam said. “But at this time right now, there’s no negative effect of this empty seat on the court.”

The SA opened applications for the remaining graduate justice position earlier this month and closed applications Wednesday. Catherine Morris, the SA’s executive chief of staff, said Hill will present his nominees during the next two senate meetings, which are scheduled for Sept. 13 and Sept. 20.

As part of the general order, the court also opened applications for the court’s registrar position, which coordinates the court’s schedule, processes complaints and serves as a liaison between the SA’s three branches. The order states applications will be open through Sept. 11.

The general order also outlines the court’s public meeting schedule for the fall semester, with 3 p.m. meetings scheduled for Sept. 17, Oct. 15 and Nov. 19.

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