February 24, 1918: Judge K. K. Hall Born in Boone County

Scale of Justice

Judge Kenneth Keller “K. K.” Hall was born in Boone County on February 24, 1918. During World War II, he served on an aircraft carrier in the Pacific, earning 11 battle stars.

After the war, he started his legal career in the Boone County seat of Madison and served as the town’s Democratic mayor from 1948 to 1952. At age 33, Hall became a circuit judge, serving from 1952 to 1969.

In 1971, President Richard Nixon appointed him a U.S. district judge for the Southern District of West Virginia. During his five years in that role, Hall made some controversial decisions, such as throwing out the state’s old abortion laws and granting injunctions in a wildcat coal strike.

In 1976, he was appointed to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, covering five states. He rejected The Citadel’s attempt to ban women from the school and argued that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration should have the power to regulate tobacco.

Judge K. K. Hall died in Charleston in 1999 at age 71. Over his career, he spent 47 years on the state and federal bench.