The Riigikogu appointed Heiki Loot to the Supreme Court judges' bench on Thursday. Mr. Loot previously served as Secretary of State, effectively governmental head, for 15 years.
His new role starts in early December, replacing Indrek Koolmeister, who is retiring.
The Supreme Court, the highest of Estonia's three-tier court system, put forward Mr. Loot and sent his candidacy to the Riigikogu for ratification.
Although he has no judges' bench experience, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court Priit Pikamäe wrote a letter of recommendation noting Mr. Loot's long term and diverse civil service experience and his role in launching legislative reforms and strengthening national institutions.
''Heiki Loot is an experienced and noted lawyer, whose past experience allows him to make a significant contribution to the Supreme Court and the development of administrative law,'' Mr. Pikamäe wrote.
Heiki Loot became Secretary of State in 2003, helping to draft laws such as the President of the Republic Election Act and the Prosecutor's Office Act. He was Rector of the Estonian Public Service Academy (1998-2003) and headed the Ministry of Justice Department of Public Law in 1995.
Mr. Loot's replacement as Secretary of State has yet to be appointed by Prime Minister Jüri Ratas (Centre). Priit Pikamäe is also in the running as Estonian advocate general at the European Court of Justice (ECJ) after previous nominee Madis Ernits was rejected.
Editor: Andrew Whyte