Panel recommends seven attorneys for vacant District Court judgeship Governor to choose one for $93,534-a-year job

November 07, 1995|By Amy L. Miller | Amy L. Miller,SUN STAFF

A Carroll County judicial nominating commission has recommended that Gov. Parris N. Glendening consider seven county attorneys -- six men and one woman -- for the District Court seat left open when Judge Donald M. Smith retired in May.

The 13-member commission, which interviewed 21 candidates and made its decision late last week, suggested the governor appoint Erin M. Danz, J. Michael Earp, Michael M. Galloway, Judson K. Larrimore, Michael S. Levin, Charles M. Preston or Marc G. Rasinsky to fill the $93,534-a-year position.

State law does not limit the amount of time the governor has to make his decision. However, in similar situations this year, Mr. Glendening has announced his appointments within a month of receiving the nominations, court officials said.

Mr. Glendening is expected to fill 25 judicial vacancies across the state by the end of the year.

"I think the governor has a good list to choose from," said Mr. Rasinsky. "There are a lot of very qualified people on the list."

Three of the nominees -- Mr. Galloway, Mr. Preston and Mr. Rasinsky -- were those Carroll County bar association members had rated most qualified to fill the position during a confidential poll.

The bar association rating is one piece of information, along with interviews and recommendations from other legal organizations, that the committee uses to make its decision.

"That was the most gratifying thing about this whole process," said Mr. Galloway of the high evaluation he received from other county lawyers. "The main goal is to be appointed, but the endorsement from my peers is important. It's a very competitive list."

County bar members had ranked Mr. Earp, Mr. Larrimore and Mr. Levin as qualified for the appointment. Those polled from the bar association felt Ms. Danz was unqualified.

"When you first apply, you don't realize there's a downside to this," Mr. Levin said. "But it feels good to get a good recommendation from your peers, and making the short list is a vote of confidence."

According to an executive order signed in April, Mr. Glendening is seeking achieve more diversity in the Maryland judicial system. As of April, 36 of Maryland's 240 judges were women and 29 were blacks.

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