Justice Guzman first Latina on Texas Supreme Court
*Note - Gov. Perry frequently departs from prepared remarks.
Good afternoon and thank you all for joining us today. It's great to be here today at Stephen F. Austin High School.
This school is named for a man whose vision for Texas could not be shaken by adversity, a vision that set our state on a course it still follows today, of hardworking people living out their dreams in a land of unique opportunity.
As he oversaw the settlement of much of Texas, Austin was not only a land broker, but also the sole executor of civil and military authority and author of the early civil and criminal code.
I believe he understood that the law was and is an essential part of a stable society, of the order that frees people to pursue their dreams. That's why we Texans exercise such care in choosing our jurists.
After all, they are the arbiters of our laws, the voice of our core precepts, and the standard-bearers of our most cherished values.
Stephen F. Austin's role in our legal past is not the only reason I have come to this school, to announce the next justice on the Supreme Court of Texas.
When I received word that Justice Brister would be stepping down, I directed my team to take our usual approach: find the best, most principled Texas jurist out there, and get him or her on the bench.
As always happens, we received a flood of applications from some remarkably talented legal minds with a breadth and depth of experience that speaks well of the legal profession in Texas.
As my team surveyed the applicants, one name kept leaping to the top of the stack, presenting a clear, compelling case for appointment, to carry on Justice Brister's strong legacy.
So I have chosen a jurist with a strong educational background that includes graduation from this very high school.
Known throughout legal circles as a strict constructionist with an unmatched work ethic, this individual has risen through the ranks to serve in the court of appeals, and has won more legal awards than we have time to list.
The child of immigrants, of loving parents who scrimped and saved to invest in their child's future, this judge has lived a life and pursued a dream that I am proud to say is still possible in Texas.
Therefore, it is without reservation, that I introduce to you the next justice of the Texas Supreme Court, a principled conservative and the first Latina to fill that role, Houston's own: Justice Eva M. Guzman.
Justice Guzman, on behalf of 24 million Texans, I am proud of you for what you have achieved and proud of what your success says about our beloved state.
In short, Texas is still a state where smarts, hard work and integrity win the day. We are honored to call you Justice.