For the first time in 17 years, the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals is getting a new circuit executive in Ben Anderson, according to announcement today [Sept. 5] by 5th Circuit Chief Judge Carl Stewart.
Anderson replaces Greg Nussel in the job which includes handling the appellate court’s budget and serving as the secretary to the Fifth Circuit Judicial Council which governs federal courts in Texas, Louisiana and Mississippi.
“It’s a wonderful job,” says Anderson, who previously served as Deputy Circuit Executive for the 5th Circuit. “We have 200 judges in the 5th Circuit and they all have my phone number. That’s a good thing and you’ve got to love working with them and I don’t mind it a bit,” Anderson says.
Nussel says he’s glad Anderson got his job. Nussel has already moved from New Orleans back to San Antonio where he started his career as a deputy clerk in the Western District of Texas. Nussel says he took retirement after scoring a bit of a record.
“I’m the sixth longest serving circuit executive in the history of the United States since the position was created by Congress in 1971,” Nussel says. “I have 32 years of service and I’m able to retire. I’ve always wanted to return to San Antonio where I formerly worked with the Western District of Clerk.”
And Nussel says he’s never lived down his first day at work in July of 1982 when he showed up at the John H. Wood Jr. Courthouse -- a building named after the judge who was murdered three years earlier by an assassin. That day was the first day of the trial of Charles Harrelson, the father of actor Woody Harrelson, who was eventually convicted of murdering Wood.
“There had to be 25 media cameras outside the John H. Wood Courthouse. I thought: ‘Holy Toledo, this must be an exciting place to work!’”
-- John Council