Retire COA Judge Charles Lester Dies

Retired chief judge was passionate legal scholar

http://www.cincinnati.com/story/news/local/northern-ky/2015/04/29/kentucky-court-appeals-retired-chief-justice-charles-bruce-lester-dies/26615675/Lester, a retired chief judge of the Kentucky Court of Appeals, died Sunday at his home in Bradenton, Florida. He served as chief judge from Dec. 16, 1990, until his retirement. In 1997, he convinced longtime friend and co-judge Anthony Wilhoit, whod retired, to become the executive director of the commission.

The Kentucky legal community, family and friends are mourning retired judge Charles Bruce Lester, whom they describe as a passionate legal scholar, a judge to be emulated and an affable man.

Lester, a retired chief judge of the Kentucky Court of Appeals, died Sunday at his home in Bradenton, Florida. He was 84.

A Campbell County native and former Fort Thomas resident, Lester was a highly respected lawyer in Northern Kentucky before serving 20 years, from Aug. 17, 1976 to July 1, 1996, as a judge on the state court of appeals. He served as chief judge from Dec. 16, 1990, until his retirement. He went on to serve as chairman on the Kentucky Legislative Ethics Commission.

“He was just the best,” said Mary “Kate” Molloy, a senior staff attorney with the Kentucky Supreme Court and 31-year attorney in Northern Kentucky. Molloy worked as Lester’s staff attorney at the appeals court for three years at the start of her career.

Northern Kentucky attorney Mark Arnzen said he practiced against and with Lester when Lester was an attorney and argued cases before the judge at the Kentucky Court of Appeals in Frankfort.

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