Newly appointed Supreme Court (SC) Associate Justice Priscilla J. Baltazar-Padilla on Friday afternoon, July 17, took her oath of office before Chief Justice Diosdado M. Peralta.
Baltazar-Padilla was plucked out of the Court of Appeals (CA) by President Duterte last July 16 to take the place of Associate Justice Andres B. Reyes Jr. who retired last May 11.
Her appointment completed the membership in the SC with 15 justices. She started her judicial career in 1996 as metropolitan trial court judge in Manila and later as regional trial court judge. She was appointed CA associate justice in 2006.
A graduate of the Lyceum of the Philippines, Associate Justice Padilla placed fifth in the 1984 bar examinations with a rating of 90.3 percent.
After passing the bar, she joined the Puno and Associates law firm and formed a law office in partnership with her husband, Venancio Padilla in 1991.
She is presently a professor at the New Era University and the Universidad de Manila.
She is also a pre-bar reviewer on Persons and Family Relations, Obligations and Contracts, and Remedial Law subjects.
The lady justice authored a book, Quick Reviewer on the Law on Marriage and Family Relations.
With her appointment, the President now has 11 appointees who are incumbent members of the SC, on top of his appointment of Chief Justice Peralta last year.
Aside from Padilla, the 10 other Duterte appointees as Associate Justices Alexander G. Gesmundo, Jose C. Reyes Jr., Ramon Paul L. Hernando, Rosmari D. Carandang, Amy C. Lazaro Javier, Henri Jean Paul B. Inting, Rodil V. Zalameda, Mario V. Lopez, Edgardo L. Delos Santos, and Samuel H. Gaerlan. The other SC members are Senior Associate Justices Estela M. Perlas-Bernabe and Associate Justices Mario Victor “Marvic” F. Leonen and Alfredo Benjamin S. Caguioa.
In September this year, Reyes will retire mandatorily when he reaches age 70.
The Judicial and Bar Council (JBC) has announced the opening of applications and recommendations to Reyes’ post. (With a report from Genalyn D. Kabiling)