Gale E. Rasin, a Baltimore District Court judge for the past eight years, was appointed yesterday to the city's Circuit Court bench.
Rasin, 52, will succeed Judge Thomas J. S. Waxter, Jr., who retired last month.
In appointing Rasin, Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. said she will "further the best interests of the citizens of Baltimore City."
Rasin, who was born in Baltimore, is familiar with the city's Circuit Court. She was a visiting judge handling misdemeanor trials this year from March until last month.
She said as a permanent Circuit Court judge, she will have to adjust to the court's structure, but the biggest difference will be the cases - Circuit Court handles people charged with the city's most serious crimes.
"The gravity of the cases is different," Rasin said. "I'm ready to handle them."
Before being appointed a District Court judge in 1992, Rasin was chief of the Medicaid fraud unit in the attorney general's office for seven years.
From 1981 until 1985 she worked for the law firm Piper & Marbury, and for four years before that, she was an assistant U.S. attorney for Maryland. From 1976 to 1977, Rasin worked as a prosecutor in Anne Arundel County.
Rasin earned her undergraduate degree from Duke University in 1973, and her law degree from Georgetown University in 1976. She joined the Maryland Bar in 1977 and has been a member of the Women's Bar Association since 1995.
She grew up in Chestertown on Maryland's Eastern Shore, and attended Kent County public schools.
In her new position, Rasin will get a raise from a District Court judge's salary of $112,252 to a Circuit Court judge's salary of $120,352.
Rasin, who is divorced, was married last month to her second husband, Tom Staffa. She has a 21-year-old son and an 18-year-old daughter.