Filed July 12, 2000
[¶1] In the Matter of the Proposal to Designate the North Dakota Supreme Court Courtroom as the "Ralph J. Erickstad Courtroom,"
[¶2] This court concludes that a designation of such high distinction must be reserved for one who has made outstanding contributions substantially advancing, promoting, and improving the administration of justice in North Dakota, and one whose contributions will have a long-lasting effect on the judiciary, the state, and the citizens of North Dakota.
[¶3] We further conclude that Ralph J. Erickstad is worthy of this high distinction for his remarkable efforts and achievements advancing, promoting, and improving the North Dakota judicial system and its judiciary, his exemplary dedication to the state, and his enduring commitment to his community and to the citizens of the state of North Dakota.
[¶4] Ralph J. Erickstad served as a justice on the North Dakota Supreme Court from 1962 through 1992, and served as chief justice from 1973 through 1992. Among the most noteworthy of Ralph J. Erickstad's many judicial accomplishments was his leadership in the unification of the state's trial courts and in the development of the judicial wing and the Supreme Court chambers of the State Capitol.
[¶5] Before serving in the judiciary, Ralph J. Erickstad distinguished himself in legislative service. He served in the North Dakota Senate from 1957 to 1962, on the Legislative Research Committee, on the State Budget Board, and on the Governor's Special Committee on Labor. He also served twice as Assistant Majority Floor Leader.
[¶6] Ralph J. Erickstad's contributions and dedication to the judiciary extend beyond North Dakota through his work with the National Conference of Chief Justices; the National Center for State Courts; the State Justice Institute Board of Directors by appointment of President Ronald Reagan and confirmation of the United States Senate; and in numerous other state and national law-related organizations.
[¶7] Ralph J. Erickstad has been active in his community and has held various leadership roles, including service as a member of several legal associations and veterans' organizations, as a council commissioner for the Missouri Valley Council of the Boy Scouts of America, and as chair of the Missouri Valley Family YMCA board of trustees.
[¶8] Ralph J. Erickstad has been publicly recognized for many of his accomplishments, including receiving the North Dakota National Leadership Award of Excellence from Governor Sinner in 1987; the Distinguished Service Award from the State Bar Association in 1988; the Distinguished Service Award from the National Center for State Courts in 1989; the Silver Beaver Award from the Boy Scouts of America, who also named the 1983 Eagle Class in his honor; the first awarded Distinguished Service Award from the Missouri Valley Family YMCA in 1973; and the Sioux Award from the University of North Dakota in 1973.
[¶9] Having considered Ralph J. Erickstad's extraordinary professional and personal dedication to public service, and having concluded that those contributions and accomplishments deserve the judiciary's highest recognition in an appropriate manner so as to remind the citizens of the state of his exemplary dedication; and having considered that public rooms in the State Capitol have traditionally been named in recognition of individuals having important roles in this state's history,
[¶10] We proudly order that the North Dakota Supreme Court Courtroom be officially designated the "Ralph J. Erickstad Courtroom," and we thank Ralph J. Erickstad for his many years of service to the judiciary, the state, and the citizens of North Dakota, and extend our congratulations to him, and his family, on this highly distinguished honor.
[¶11] We further order that the appropriate public officials and employees take the action necessary to rename the Supreme Court Courtroom as the "Ralph J. Erickstad Courtroom," including informing the executive and legislative branches of government, replacing room designation plaques, and taking any other action necessary to ensure future designation of and reference to the courtroom as the Ralph J. Erickstad Courtroom; and
[¶12] We further order that the Clerk of the Supreme Court present a copy of this order to Ralph J. Erickstad and forward a copy of this order to the director of institutions.
[¶13] The Supreme Court of the State of North Dakota convened in Special Session on July 12, 2000, with the Honorable Gerald W. VandeWalle, Chief Justice, and the Honorable William A. Neumann, the Honorable Dale V. Sandstrom, the Honorable Mary Muehlen Maring, and the Honorable Carol Ronning Kapsner, Justices.
|[¶14]||Gerald W. VandeWalle, C.J.|
William A. Neumann
Dale V. Sandstrom
Mary Muehlen Maring
Carol Ronning Kapsner