Scott G Winterton, Deseret News
Members of Utah's Supreme Court, left to right, Justice Ronald E. Nehring, Justice Matthew B. Durrant and Justice Jill N. Parrish, listen to Justice Christine M. Durham as she gives the State of the Judiciary Jan. 23, 2012. Durrant was sworn in as the new chief justice on Monday.

SALT LAKE CITY — A new chief justice has been sworn in at the Utah Supreme Court.

Matthew B. Durrant took over the post from Justice Christine M. Durham following a ceremony Monday. Durrant has been on the state's high court since his appointment by Gov. Mike Leavitt in January 2000.

He served as associate chief justice to Durham, who was the first woman to hold the chief justice title and held the position since April 2002. She has had the second-longest term behind Gordon R. Hall, who held the position for 12 years.

The chief justice position is held for four years and is decided by the five Supreme Court justices in a unanimous vote. Justice Ronald Nehring will serve as associate chief justice to Durrant.

Durrant graduated with a law degree from Harvard in 1984. He served as a clerk in the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals before joining the Salt Lake City law firm Parr, Waddoups, Brown, Gee & Loveless, where he became a shareholder.

He was then appointed to the 3rd District Court bench, where he was serving when he was appointed to the Utah Supreme Court.