Judge Revell Lewis will officially hang up the robe and gavel as the Accomack & Northampton County Circuit Court Judge at the end of 2023.
In Virginia Judges are required by law to retire within one year after their 73rd birthday. Judge Lewis is turning 73 in March, and he said after several long conversations with his family, now was the time.
“I don’t know if its any one thing in particular, it’s just time,” he said.
The process is initiated and the paperwork has been filed.
Nominated as a potential candidate to fill the seat of Judge Glen Tyler during a special legislative session in July of 2011, Lewis cleared the hurdles of both legislative chambers in Virginia and was officially invested in August of 2011 under Governor Bob McDonnell. The seat has been held by giants in the Eastern Shore’s history, including Abel Parker Upshur(1826-1841), who served as Secretary of State under President John Tyler, and Charles Lankford(1965-1969), the man for whom Route 13 is named.
Born in Nassawadox and raised in Parksley, Lewis attended Washington and Lee before continuing on to the University of Richmond Law School. He began practicing law in Accomack in June of 1979.
Lewis plans to serve as a substitute judge once retired.
During his tenure on the bench, he had the honor to serve on the Virginia Sentencing Commission and on the Bench Book Committee, along with 9 other judges from across the state. He was appointed to both by the Chief Justice of the Virginia Supreme Court.
“I felt honored to have state wide representation from the Shore on these things,” he said.
Now the question turns to who will take his place. Judge Lewis said he had no idea who would replace him. Judges in Virginia are nominated by the legislature, originating in the House of Delegates. Candidates will go before the Courts of Justice Committee for interviews. If approved, the candidate then goes through the same process in the Senate, before being approved by the Governor. A replacement will be chosen in this year’s General Assembly Session.
Accomack and Northampton County fall in the 2nd Circuit with Virginia Beach in the Virginia Legal System. A law recently passed, sponsored by Delegate Rob Bloxom and Senator Lynwood Lewis, requires one of the circuit judgeships within the 2nd District be an individual who is a resident and domiciliary(a person who actually lives in) of Accomack or Northampton County.
“It’s been an honor and a privilege to serve,” said Lewis when asked about his career. “The people that I work with every day, my assistant, the bailiffs and the clerks couldn’t be a better group of people to work with.”