Nova Scotia Supreme Court Chief Justice Joseph Kennedy to retire next May

The chief justice of the Nova Scotia Supreme Court has announced he will step down from the bench next year.

Chief Justice Joseph P. Kennedy announced Thursday that he will retire on May 1.

The 74-year-old Kennedy was appointed chief justice in July 1998.

The native of Enfield, N.S., was first appointed as a provincial court judge in September 1978, serving primarily in Bridgewater and Lunenburg.

He was appointed chief judge of the provincial court in July 1996 before being elevated to the provincial Supreme Court in April 1997.

The announcement of Kennedy's pending retirement triggers the selection process to appoint a new chief justice, an appointment that is made by the federal cabinet based on recommendations from the prime minister.