Indiana Gov. Mike Pence has named Indianapolis attorney Geoffrey Slaughter to the state Supreme Court.

Pence announced Monday he’d chosen Slaughter from among three finalists selected in March by the state’s Judicial Nominating Commission.

Slaughter’s appointment fills a vacancy on the five-member court and is Pence’s first appointment to the court. Twenty-nine people applied to fill the post.

The 53-year-old Slaughter succeeds former Justice Brent Dickson, who retired last month before he reached the mandatory retirement age of 75 in July.

“A remarkable ability to think and to write clearly on complex legal issues and, as is of equal importance for members of our judiciary, Geoff has throughout his career demonstrated a steadfast commitment to improving the quality of life in his community,” Pence said.

Slaughter says he’s become familiar with the court after more than two decades of arguing cases before its justices.

“Throughout that time, it’s rightly been recognized as a smart, hard-working and collegial court, and I pledge to do all I can to insure that my service on the court only reinforces those qualities.”

Slaughter was a finalist for the Indiana Supreme Court in 2012, when then-Gov. Mitch Daniels chose Loretta Rush for the bench.