Gov. Rick Perry has named Justice Nathan Hecht as the new chief justice of the Supreme Court of Texas.

Hecht was first elected to the Court in 1998 and currently serves as senior justice. His term is set to last until the next general election in 2014, when he’ll have to run again to keep the position.

“I know Justice Hecht to be a man of the most upstanding character and integrity, with an uncompromising commitment to protecting the interests of the citizens of Texas,” Gov. Perry said in a statement.

Hecht will replace Chief Justice Wallace Jefferson, who will step down on October 1. Jefferson has served since 2004, when he became the first African American Justice of the Texas Supreme Court.