Four more nominated for city Circuit Court vacancy

April 22, 2002|By Nora Achrati | Nora Achrati,SUN STAFF

An administrative law judge, a private attorney and two lawyers employed by the state have been added to the list of candidates recommended to Gov. Parris N. Glendening for a vacancy on the Baltimore Circuit Court.

The 13-member Trial Courts Judicial Nominating Commission for the city district selected the four nominees from a pool of eight applicants.

They join four applicants previously recommended to a Baltimore Circuit Court position from a prior vacancy.

The governor, who can choose from either set of applicants, is set to interview candidates and make an appointment to the $119,600-a-year post in a matter of weeks, a spokesman from the governor's office said.

The opening was created by the retirement Jan. 15 of Judge John Carroll Byrnes.

Candidates applied for the post in mid-February and underwent a series of interviews with state and city bar associations and the nominating commission.

"There's a lot of vetting," said commission member Jennifer Burdick. "When a candidate gets recommended to the governor, a lot of people have provided input."

The nominating commission votes by secret ballot.

Burdick, a lay member and president of CMK Associates LLC, a human resources consulting company, says she looks for candidates with strong ties to the community.

"And I think what we all look for is somebody who has the intelligence and the demeanor to rule fairly and wisely," Burdick said.

The judge will sit on the Circuit Court bench until the 2004 general election. Circuit Court judges are elected to 15-year terms. Thirty judges sit on the Baltimore Circuit Court bench.

The four new nominees, announced recently, are:

Joan Bossman Gordon, 49, an administrative law judge with the state Office of Administrative Hearings and member of the executive council of the Baltimore City Bar Association. Gordon is a past president of the Women's Bar Association of Maryland and the Women's Law Center of Maryland.

Althea Marie Handy, 44, chief of the sex offenses division of the Baltimore state's attorney's office since 1999. Handy has been with the state's attorney's office for 15 years and has extensive trial experience with homicide cases. She has been an adjunct professor of legal writing at the University of Baltimore School of Law for 13 years.

Edward Ronald Kuciauskas Hargadon, 47, principal counsel for the Maryland Department of Transportation. Hargadon is a past president of the Baltimore City Community Relations Commission and is active in the Charles Village community. He has been with the Maryland attorney general's office since 1984.

Joseph Harrison Young, 45, a partner with the Baltimore office of the Washington-based firm of Hogan & Hartson. Young is a former assistant U.S. attorney for Maryland. His current practice centers around white-collar criminal defense. Young is also a permanent member of the Judicial Conference for the Fourth Circuit of the United States Court of Appeals.

The four previously nominated to a Circuit Court position are:

Nancy Eileen Gregor, a health care lawyer who maintains a Towson practice.

John Henry Lewin Jr., a commercial litigation lawyer with the Baltimore office of Venable, Baetjer & Howard.

M. Natalie McSherry, a lawyer with the Baltimore office of Whiteford, Taylor & Preston.

Stephen James Sfekas, a lawyer with Weinberg & Green.

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