The official portrait of U.S. District Judge Terry Means was hung last month in his second floor courtroom in Fort Worth’s Eldon B. Mahon U.S. Courthouse, memorializing his 22 years of service on the federal trial court bench.
Now, the only thing left for Means to do is to celebrate his birthday on July 3 -- the day he’ll turn 65 and officially take senior status. On that day, Means will begin taking a reduced civil docket but will keep a full criminal docket — one he shares with U.S. District Judge John McBryde.
“I’m looking forward to slowing down a little and doing things that I’ve been putting off most of my life,’’ Means says.
For Means that includes writing three books: one about constitutional reform, another about U.S. presidential campaigns, and the last about an unlikely youth soccer team from Corsicana led by an inexperienced coach wearing boots and a cowboy hat who took the kids all the way to a state championship.
“Those are all big time commitments. Whether or not I get them done, I don’t know. But that’s what I hope to do,’’ Means says.
Means, who then-President George H.W. Bush appointed to the bench in 1991, says he'll move to a fifth-floor courtroom when his replacement is named. He’s looking forward to that move because that’s where courthouse namesake Eldon B. Mahon last presided before his death in 2005. Mahon is beloved in Fort Worth, and the city’s Inn of Court is named after him.
“I consider it an honor,” Means says.
--- John Council