Thailand appoints first female Supreme Court President

In another hallmark of female advancement in the Kingdom, Thailand’s Judicial Commission has endorsed Methinee Chalothorn as the new Supreme Court President, making her the country’s first woman to hold that prestigious post.

Justice Methinee is currently serving as the Vice President of the Supreme Court, and she will succeed Salaiket Watanaphan as President of the Court when he retires in September this year. The Judicial Commission approved Methinee’s nomination on July 24.

Methinee’s appointment is significant because the legal profession and courts remain male-dominated, according to Professor Usimard Siampukdee of Chiang Mai University. “Although women do serve as judges, state prosecutors and, recently, police officers for interrogation, few of them achieve high-level positions,” he wrote.

Thailand is among the countries with the highest percentage of women business executives in the world. While the Kingdom elected its first woman Prime Minister in 2011, female politicians, similar to female judges, are few in number compared to their male counterparts.

Methinee will serve as the Kingdom’s 46th Supreme Court President. She is a law graduate from Thammasat University and earned a master’s degree in justice administration also from Thammasat University.

Before serving on the Supreme Court, Methinee held the post of President of the Court of Appeals for Specialized Cases and was a member of the Judicial Administration Commission and the Judicial Commission.

The 64-year-old Methinee has a long career in the justice system. She began as a provincial court judge in northeastern Surin province in 1981, then moved on to a judgeship in North Bangkok District Court, head of the Bankruptcy Division in the Appeals Court, and head of the Consumer Case Division in the Appeals Court.

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