Taylor, Steven W. | 2009
- Birth and Death Year | 1949 - Present
- Induction Year | 2009
- Profession | Supreme Court Justice
- Oklahoma Connection | Justice Taylor was born in Henryetta, Oklahoma, and grew up in McAlester.
- Hometown | McAlester
Taylor was elected as Mayor of McAlester in 1982— the youngest in the city’s history.
"It is truly ironic that the very government . . .that you professed to hate is the very government that assured you a fair trial and protected your rights."
- Justice Steven W. Taylor, to the defendant at sentencing in the Oklahoma City Bombing trial
Justice Steven W. Taylor, McAlester, earned his B.A. from Oklahoma State University in 1971 and his Juris Doctor from the University of Oklahoma in 1974. He joined the U.S. Marine Corps in 1970 and served on active duty from 1974 to 1978. In 1977 he became the youngest judge in the U.S. Armed Forces and was promoted to the rank of Major. In 1982 he was elected mayor of McAlester, and a multi-million dollar industrial park has since been named for him in recognition of his economic development efforts.
Taylor was inducted into the Oklahoma State University Hall of Fame and has received the Regents Alumni Award from the University of Oklahoma, making him the only person to have received the highest alumni recognition from both schools.
Taylor was a district judge for 21 years and presided over more than 500 jury trials, including the state trial of the 160 civilian murder counts in the Oklahoma City bombing case. In 2004, Taylor was appointed to the Supreme Court of Oklahoma and served as Chief Justice from 2011 to 2013. During the Oklahoma Centennial year, Oklahoma magazine named Justice Taylor as one of the “100 Who Shaped Us,” a list of living and past Oklahomans who influenced the first 100 years of our state.
Justice Taylor retired from the Supreme Court on December 31, 2016, after 33 years of judicial service. After his retirement and in recognition of his long public service, the Pittsburg County Court buildings in McAlester, Oklahoma, were named "The Justice Steven W. Taylor Courthouse Complex".