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FILE - In this Dec. 1, 2010 file photo, Massachusetts Supreme Court Associate Justice Roderick Ireland answers questions during a confirmation hearing as he seeks a position to be the next chief justice of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court in Boston. Ireland said he will retire in July, several months before he reaches the mandatory retirement age of 70. "Serving the people of Massachusetts in this great office of public trust has been a truly humbling, challenging, stimulating — albeit sometimes difficult , but always rewarding experience, and I have enjoyed each and every day of my work," Ireland wrote in a letter to Gov. Deval Patrick. Patrick named Ireland as the first black chief justice in the court's history in 2010. Ireland was first appointed to the high court in 1997. (AP Photo/Bizuayehu Tesfaye)

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U.S. President Barack Obama drinks Guinness beer at Ollie Hayes pub in Moneygall, Ireland, the ancestral homeland of his great-great-great grandfather, Monday, May 23, 2011. (AP Photo, Pool)

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U.S. President Barack Obama drinks Guinness beer at Ollie Hayes pub in Moneygall, Ireland, the ancestral homeland of his great-great-great grandfather, Monday, May 23, 2011. (AP Photo, Pool)

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Sean Greenwood of Ireland speeds down the track during the men's skeleton training at the 2014 Winter Olympics, Wednesday, Feb. 12, 2014, in Krasnaya Polyana, Russia. (AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko)

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In photos taken Monday, Feb. 10, 2014 and Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2014, top from left, Eric Neilson of Canada, Janine Flock of Austria, Alexander Kroeckel of Germany, John Fairbairn of Canada, Sarah Reid of Canada; bottom row from left, Dominic Parsons of Britain, John Daly of the United States, Hiroatsu Takahashi of Japan, Sean Greenwood of Ireland, and Katie Uhlaender of the United States train in the men and women's skeleton at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Krasnaya Polyana, Russia. (AP Photo)