Navajo Nation Supreme Court Justices

Photo Credit: Gallup Independent

The Honorable T. J. Holgate was designated Acting Chief Justice by the Law and Order Committee on July 31, 2017.


Photo Credit: Kathie Curley

The Honorable Eleanor Shirley has been serving as an Associate Justice since July 2008. She was confirmed as a permanent Associate Justice of the Supreme Court on October 19, 2011.

Justice Shirley is from the Nazlini community.  She is Táchii’nii (Red Running Into Water Clan) born for the Ma’iideeshgiizhnii (Coyote Pass – Jemez Clan). Her maternal grandfather’s clan is Tábaahi (Water Edge Clan) and her paternal grandfather’s clan is Tódich’iinii (Bitter Water Clan). 

Justice Shirley was confirmed as a District Court Judge on October 23, 2006 and served as a District Court Judge at the Crownpoint Judicial District before becoming Associate Justice.

Prior to her confirmation, Justice Shirley’s legal career began in 1977 as a Tribal Court Advocate at Chinle DNA – People’s Legal Services Corporation, Chinle, Arizona.  Since then, she has worked with the Navajo people in various capacities with the Navajo Nation government as a Juvenile Presenting Officer at the Window Rock Prosecutor’s Office, as a Tribal Court Advocate at the Navajo Nation Department of Justice, and as a Legislative Advisor with the Navajo Nation Legislative Branch. She was also a local school board member for the Nazlini BIA School and Chapter Secretary-Treasurer for the Nazlini Chapter.

Justice Shirley holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and is a member of the Navajo Nation Bar Association.


Chief Justices of the Supreme Court

Years Served

Tom Tso

Homer Bluehouse (Acting)

Robert Yazzie

Claudeen Bates Arthur

Lorene B. Ferguson (Acting)

Herb Yazzie

Allen Sloan (Acting)








  Associate Justices of the Supreme Court  

Raymond D. Austin

Homer Bluehouse

Wayne Cadman Sr.

Lorene B. Ferguson

Marcella King-Ben

Louise G. Grant

Eleanor Shirley