Eighth Circuit Historical Society

The Historical Society of the United States Courts in the Eighth Circuit

Judge Myron H. Bright The Honorable Myron H. Bright
U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit

The 8th Circuit Court of Appeal's Longest Working Judge

Judge Bright was born in 1919 and received his commission to serve on the U.S. Court of Appeals on June 7, 1968. In April 2009 he reached an important milestone in Eighth Circuit history: He had been hearing cases with the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals for 40 years and 8 months, which is longer than any other judge ever appointed to this Court.* This took place on April 15 when Judge Bright sat with Judge Murphy and Judge Bye in the third division's northeast courtroom in St. Louis' Thomas F. Eagleton U.S. Courthouse.

Judge Bright continued to serve the Court for another 7 years and 5 months. After 48 years judicial service, Judge Bright heard his last case at the age of 97, on September 23, 2016, just three months before his death on December 12.

Revered by judges and lawyers nationwide, Judge Bright was considered a legal giant and champion for equal justice under the law.

A memorial service was held at North Dakota State University's Reineke Fine Arts Center on December 21, 2016. Click here to watch the service and view photos of tribute. (The video and photos are on the bottom, left of the page. The service is approximately an hour in length and begins after the initial 28 minutes of music.)

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit held a memorial session in honor of Judge Bright on July 11, 2017 in Fargo, North Dakota, in conjunction with the Eighth Circuit Judicial Conference.

Judge Bright standing by his biographical display
Judge Bright at the 2009 Eighth Circuit Judicial Conference in Duluth, Minnesota, standing by the display made in his honor.

*Judge Joseph W. Woodrough served on the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals for 44 years from 1933 to 1977, but he stopped hearing cases when he took senior status in 1961, working a total of "only" 28 years.

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