Vermont Attorney General

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The Vermont Attorney General is one of five cabinet-level constitutional officers in the U.S. state of Vermont which are elected every two years. It was created by an act of the Vermont General Assembly in 1790, repealed in 1797, and revived in 1904. The office began as a one-person operation located at Windsor, Vermont, the state's first capital. When the position was recreated in 1904 offices were located in the Vermont State House. The office is now headquartered in the Pavilion and is the largest employer of attorneys in the state. T. J. Donovan of Burlington is the current Vermont Attorney General.

The office provides legal counsel for all state agencies and the Vermont General Assembly, the state's legislative branch. It handles civil and criminal cases in all courts of the state for both the trial and appellate levels. It defends the state when it is sued and files suits to enforce Vermont’s criminal, environmental, consumer protection, civil rights and other laws.[1]


The attorney general was originally chosen by a vote of the Vermont General Assembly.[2][3] Since 1908 the attorney general has been elected every two years at the same time and in the same manner as other statewide elected officials.[4]

List of Vermont Attorneys General

# Name Term of Office Political Party
1 Samuel Hitchcock 1790–1793 Federalist
2 Daniel Buck 1793–1795 Federalist
Office vacant 1795–1797
Office abolished 1797–1904
3 Clarke C. Fitts 1904–1908 Republican
4 John G. Sargent 1908–1912 Republican
5 Rufus E. Brown 1912–1914 Republican
6 Herbert G. Barber 1914–1919 Republican
7 Frank C. Archibald 1919–1925 Republican
8 J. Ward Carver 1925–1931 Republican
9 Lawrence C. Jones 1931–1941 Republican
10 Alban J. Parker 1941–1947 Republican
11 Clifton G. Parker 1947–1952[5] Republican
12 F. Elliott Barber Jr. 1952–1955[6] Republican
13 Robert T. Stafford 1955–1957 Republican
14 Frederick M. Reed 1957–1960 Republican
15 Thomas M. Debevoise 1960–1962 Republican
16 Charles J. Adams 1962–1963 Republican
17 Charles E. Gibson Jr. 1963–1965 Republican
18 John P. Connarn 1965–1967 Democratic
19 James L. Oakes 1967–1969 Republican
20 James M. Jeffords 1969–1973 Republican
21 Kimberly B. Cheney 1973–1975 Republican
22 M. Jerome Diamond 1975–1981 Democratic
23 John J. Easton, Jr. 1981–1985 Republican
24 Jeffrey L. Amestoy 1985–1997 Republican
25 Bill Sorrell 1997–2017 Democratic
26 T. J. Donovan 2017–present Democratic


  1. ^ "Official site". Archived from the original on 2006-03-01. Retrieved 2006-09-03.
  2. ^ Crockett, Walter H. (1928). State Papers of Vermont. III. p. 220.
  3. ^ Journal of the Senate of the State of Vermont. St. Albans, VT: St. Albans Messenger Company. 1905. p. 493.
  4. ^ 3 V.S.A. §151
  5. ^ "Parker Resigns Attorney-General Post as of Dec. 31; Elliott Barber Jr. Named to Office". Burlington Free Press. Burlington, VT. December 27, 1952. p. 2.
  6. ^ "Parker Resigns Attorney-General Post as of Dec. 31; Elliott Barber Jr. Named to Office"

External links

  • Official website
  • Vermont Attorney General articles at Legal Newsline Legal Journal
  • Vermont Attorney General articles at ABA Journal
  • News and Commentary at FindLaw
  • Vermont Statutes at
  • U.S. Supreme Court Opinions - "Cases with title containing: State of Vermont" at FindLaw
  • Vermont Bar Association
  • Vermont Attorney General William H. Sorrell profile at National Association of Attorneys General
  • Press releases at Vermont Attorney General
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