Robert W. Clifford

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Robert W. Clifford is a former associate justice on the Maine Supreme Judicial Court. He was appointed to this position on August 1, 1986 by then-governor Joseph Brennan, a Democrat. He was reappointed to seven-year terms[1] in 1993, 2000, and 2007. He retired in 2009.[2][3]


Justice Clifford grew up in Lewiston, Maine. He graduated from Bowdoin College in 1959, and earned a law degree from Boston College Law School in 1962. He then served in the United States Army from 1962 until 1964, attaining the rank of Captain. In 1998, he earned an LLM in Judicial Process from the University of Virginia School of Law.[4]


Upon leaving the armed forces, Clifford practiced law in Lewiston-Auburn for fifteen years with the firm Clifford & Clifford. He was also an alderman and a two-time mayor in this city.

During his legislative tenure, he represented the senate on the Commission to Revise Maine’s Probate Laws, which drafted Maine’s current Probate Code. In 1978 and 1979 he was the Chairman of the Lewiston Charter Commission, which drafted Lewiston's current city charter.

On June 8, 1979, former Governor Joseph Brennan appointed Clifford to the state's Superior Court. Another appointment by Chief Justice Vincent McKusisk made Clifford the first Chief Justice of the Maine Superior Court in 1984, a position he would hold until his appointment to the Supreme Judicial Court on August 1, 1986. In that instance he was again appointed by Governor Brennan.

Justice Clifford serves as the Court's liason to the Advisory Committee on the Rules of Criminal Procedure, and to the Maine Assistance Program. He also serves as an adviser to the Criminal Law Advisory Commission.[5][4]

Prior to his judicial service, Clifford worked in the state's senate during the 106th and 107th Legislatures.[5]

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