Gov. Evers appoints White to state appeals court; 1st African-American woman to serve

MADISON — Gov. Tony Evers appointed Milwaukee County Chief Judge Maxine White to the state appeals court on Thursday, making her the first African American woman to serve at that level.

Evers called her a “passionate, dedicated jurist who is committed to ensuring that all people – regardless of background – are treated fairly in our courts.”

White, 68, has been a judge in Milwaukee County Circuit Court since 1992 when she was appointed by Republican Gov. Tommy Thompson. For seven years prior to that she was an assistant U.S. attorney in Milwaukee.

Her appointment to the 1st District Court of Appeals comes six months after White fought off an attempt by Milwaukee County judges to remove her as chief judge.

White replaces Judge Joan Kessler, who is resigning effective Feb. 7. White's term will run through July 31, 2021.