DES MOINES, Iowa -- Until now, Iowa was the only state in the country where the state’s highest court was made up of all men.
Then Justice Susan Christensen joined the seven-person bench, officially being sworn in to serve on the state's highest court Friday.
Governor Kim Reynolds chose Christensen to replace retiring Justice Bruce Zager in August, and administered the oath of office to Christensen for the ceremony in the packed Supreme Court chambers, where she was joined by friends, family and colleagues.
Christensen's appointment the the court gives Iowa its first female justice in eight years.
“I’ve always believed my gender has nothing to do with my qualifications," Christensen said in her remarks from the bench. "It has nothing to do with my experience. It has nothing to do with my passion—my desire to keep learning. But what I have learned since my appointment, is it sure means a lot to others."
Christensen was a district court judge serving Southwest Iowa before being tapped for the Iowa Supreme Court
Iowa voters will weigh in on Christensen’s new job at the ballot box in 2020. If they vote to keep her on the bench, she will serve on the court for eight years before facing another retention election.
Her father, the late Justice Jerry Larson, was the longest-serving justice in Iowa history, serving for nearly 30 years.