January 16, 2015 — Hebrew University alumna, Miriam Naor was appointed Israel’s 11th Supreme Court President. Naor is the second female Supreme Court President in Israel’s history. Dorit Beinisch, also a Hebrew University alumna, was the first.
Widely esteemed for her expertise in criminal law, Justice Miriam Naor was born in Jerusalem and completed her law studies cum laude at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem in 1971 and was accepted to the bar in the following year. From 1972 until 1979, she served as deputy state attorney in the Ministry of Justice. Sworn in as a judge in the Jerusalem Magistrates’ Court in January 1980, she was at the time the youngest judge in Israel. In May 1989, after serving as an acting judge from April 1988, she became a judge in the Jerusalem District Court. She also served as head of the court for Anti-Trust Law. In August 2000 she was appointed deputy president of the Jerusalem court for public administration matters and from June 2001 until the end of March 2002 sat as an acting justice in the Supreme Court. This became a permanent position in June 2003.
Justice Naor served on the panels of judges which dealt with highly complex cases that were widely publicized because they related either to the crimes of public figures or prominent businessmen, or to the most severe of crimes. In December 2004, Naor was appointed head of the Ministry of Justice Committee for Criminal Procedure which advises the Minister of Justice on matters relating to Criminal procedures. From 1972 to 2001 Naor lectured on various subjects in the Law Faculty of The Hebrew University.
Former Supreme Court president Aharon Barak describes Naor as a “classic” judge: someone who knows that the mission is to resolve the specific conflict at hand, but also someone who changes over time. He continued, “If I were a criminal, heaven forbid, or suddenly got into trouble and had to stand trial before a judge whose integrity and fairness I trust – I would choose Justice Miriam Naor.”