Fulton County Superior Court , submitted his resignation from the Fulton County bench late Thursday, according to an e-mail news release from Alvelyn Sanders of Sanders Communications. He will officially step down on Feb. 18, 2012.
"It has been a privilege and an honor to serve Atlanta, Fulton County, and the State of Georgia," Arrington, a Cascade Heights resident, said in the release. "I want to express my profound appreciation to friends and supporters for having confidence in me over the years."
First elected to the Atlanta Board of Aldermen (now the Atlanta City Council) in 1969 at the age of 27, Arrington served over the next 12 years in various elected post seats. In 1981 he was elected President of the Atlanta City Council, a position he held until 1996.
Arrington, 70, says he realized that he had marked 43 years of public service. "It is time to pass the baton," Arrington said. "Additionally, I want to spend more personal time with my children and grandchildren, travel and see more of the world."
Arrington—one of two blacks to integrate the full-time program at Emory University Law School in 1965—has made headlines over the years including in 1997 when he was narrowly defeated by Bill Campbell for the mayorship and in 2008 when he ordered white lawyers out of his courtroom so he could lecture several teenage African-American defendants.
Prior to his appointment as judge, Arrington had a successful law practice and was senior partner in the law firm of Arrington & Hollowell. He also has been recognized for his outstanding service by his peers and the community.
Arrington has been voted "One of Atlanta's Top 25 Lawyers" by “Atlanta” magazine and was recognized "Among the 100 Most Influential People in Georgia" by “Georgia Trend” magazine.”
Judge Arrington also received the Georgia Bar Association's highest community service award, The Chief Justice Robert Benham Award for Community Service, as well as the Seth Kirschenbaum Diversity Award presented by the Multi-Bar Leadership Council. Recently, the Gate City Bar Association presented Judge Arrington the Clarence Cooper Legacy Award for Community Service.
Arrington was appointed by former Georgia Governor Roy Barnes to the position of Superior Court Judge for Fulton County in 2002, where he was subsequently reelected by the voters of Fulton County for two 4-year terms.
As Superior Court Judge, Arrington increased his commitment to the plight of young people, particularly African-American men. As a result, Arrington embarked on a crusade to raise awareness through a series of public events and lectures, which gained national attention and commendation.
In his 2008 autobiography, " he notes that he has "always gained strength, new insights, and a deeper hunger to succeed" in the midst of adversity.
An Atlanta native, graduated from Emory University School of Law in 1967. He received his undergraduate degree from Clark College, now Clark Atlanta University, and studied as an International Business Fellow at the London School of Business.