Justices of the Supreme Court

Justice
TOKURA, Saburo
Date of Birth: August 11, 1954

image:TOKURA Saburo

Career

Education:

Graduated from Hitotsubashi University, Faculty of Law in 1980

Qualification:

Appointed as a legal apprentice in 1980

Professional Career:

1982
Appointed as a Judge, and then, assigned to Osaka District Court, Sapporo District Court, Civil Affairs Bureau, General Secretariat of Supreme Court, Personnel Affairs Bureau, General Secretariat of Supreme Court, Tokyo District Court
1992
Judge, Tokyo District Court
1994
Professor, Legal Training and Research Institute
1998
Judge, Hiroshima District Court
1999
Presiding Judge, Hiroshima District Court
2000
Director of the Secretariat, Hiroshima High Court
2004
Counselor, Personnel Affairs Bureau, General Secretariat, Supreme Court
2004
Councilor, General Secretariat, Supreme Court
2008
Presiding Judge, Tokyo District Court
2009
Director-General, General Affairs Bureau, General Secretariat, Supreme Court
2013
Judge, Tokyo High Court
2013
Chief Judge, Saitama District Court
2014
Secretary-General of Supreme Court
2016
President, Tokyo High Court
2017
March 14, 2017 Justice of the Supreme Court

Motto, hobbies

Things to Keep in Mind as a Justice

I think it is very important to be aware of the inherent limitations of human ability. Even the most knowledgeable people with the broadest experience cannot accurately understand everything in the world. This sense of humility is particularly vital for viewing things. I try to make my mind as a blank state, without being influenced by personal values and experience. This is not easy to practice effectively, but I will continue with my improvement efforts, because I believe this is an essential approach to grasping the essence of the situation, which provides a basis for flexible interpretation from multiple viewpoints.

Favorite Word or Term

My favorite words of wisdom are “Ichigu o terasu.” This is a phrase from the writing of a Japanese priest who lived long ago. It summarizes the importance of individual persons identifying the significance of the given task in the given situation and exerting quiet, devoted efforts to perform the task. That idea struck a chord in my heart, and has become my guiding philosophy in life.

Books that Left an Impression on Me

I enjoy reading, and aside from railway-related themes (area of my special interest), I read several genres, choosing titles based on my interest of the time. Yet, I often focus on British travel and history writing as well as historic works on Japan’s Showa era (1926-89). My long-time favorite in this area is Shippai no Honshitsu (The Essence of Failure), written by Ryoichi Tobe and five other authors. As a repeat reader, I have been intrigued each time by its deep insights into critical issues inherent in many Japanese organizations.

I also like mystery novels, and one of my favorite novelists is F.W. Crofts. My initial attention was drawn to his background as a railway engineer. I have been enthralled by his story development, which centers on the detective’s rigorous analyses of the case based on facts collected via persistent effort, rather than a flash of intuition. I also like his works where the criminal plays the lead character, allowing you to enjoy the mounting thrill of being chased by the detective.

Hobbies

I have had a long-time interest in railways, starting from elementary school. I have not established an area of specialty in activities combined with that interest, such as photography and complete riding, which is a popular practice recently. However, my passion has grown for the old rolling stock decommissioned from the former Japanese National Railways. I like visiting railway museums, such as the now-closed Tokyo Transportation Museum in Akihabara, the Railway Museum in Omiya and Usui Pass Railway Heritage Park in Annaka, Gunma Prefecture, to indulge myself in nostalgic mock train rides in preserved cars.

Another favorite pastime of mine is walking around and exploring towns and streets, which developed from an exercise routine I began ten years ago. The first time I explore a town is particularly exciting, but it is often difficult at the same time, as I may accidentally come across a local train, posing a dilemma over which to choose: continue the walking exploration or take a first-ever ride on the train.

  1. About the Supreme Court
    1. Access to the Supreme Court
    2. Organization Chart of the Supreme Court
    3. Justices of the supreme court
      1. IKEGAMI Masayuki
      2. OTANI Naoto
      3. KOIKE Hiroshi
      4. KIZAWA Katsuyuki
      5. KANNO Hiroyuki
      6. YAMAGUCHI Atsushi
      7. TOKURA Saburo
      8. HAYASHI Keiichi
      9. MIYAZAKI Yuko
      10. MIYAMA Takuya
      11. MIURA Mamoru
      12. KUSANO Koichi
      13. UGA Katsuya
      14. HAYASHI Michiharu
      15. OKAMURA Kazumi
      16. Former Justices
    4. Topics
      1. Deputy Chief Justice of the Supreme People’s Court of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam Visits the Supreme Court of Japan
      2. The former Deputy President of the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom Visits the Supreme Court of Japan
      3. The President of the Supreme Court of the Kingdom of Thailand Visits the Supreme Court of Japan
      4. The Prosecutor General of the Supreme People’s Procuracy of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam Visits the Supreme Court of Japan
      5. The Judge of the European Court of Human Rights Visits the Supreme Court of Japan
      6. Judges from Germany, U.K. and U.S. Visit the Supreme Court of Japan
      7. Chief Justice of the Supreme People’s Court of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam visits the
      8. The Minister of Justice of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam Visits the Supreme Court of Japan
      9. The Attorney General of the Ministry of Justice of Israel Visits the Supreme Court of Japan
      10. The Attorney General of Malaysia Visits the Supreme Court of Japan
      11. Chief Justice of Canada Visits the Supreme Court of Japan
      12. The President of the German-Japanese Association of Jurists Visits the Supreme Court of Japan
      13. The Head of Division, Administrative, Finance and Social Courts, Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection of Germany Visits the Supreme Court of Japan
      14. Participants of “Japan-France Law Conference” Visit the Supreme Court of Japan
      15. Participants of “Japan-Germany Constitutional Conversation” Visit the Supreme Court of Japan
      16. Judges who speak in JSIP2019 Visit the Supreme Court of Japan