Kane, 66, to retire as chief judge of county Circuit Court on June 1

His leaving marks second vacancy on bench this year

February 23, 2005|By Laura Cadiz | Laura Cadiz,SUN STAFF

Howard County Circuit Judge Raymond J. Kane Jr. has announced he is retiring June 1, leaving a second vacancy on the five-member bench this year.

Kane, 66, has served as a Howard Circuit Court judge for 22 years and has been the chief judge of the bench since 2004.

"I have mixed emotions," Kane said yesterday. "I enjoy what I'm doing; I've always enjoyed being a judge. I find its challenges rewarding, but I think it's time for me to step down and pursue some other interests."

Kane said he wants to spend more time with his three grandchildren and travel. He said he will still be available to preside over proceedings if he is asked to do so by the court.

Born in Baltimore, Kane graduated from the University of Maryland School of Law in 1963 and worked as an attorney from 1964 to 1977. He was a District Court judge from 1977 to 1982 and the district administrative judge for Howard and Carroll counties for two years.

The Maryland Judiciary is accepting applications to fill Kane's spot. The application deadline is March 21, and the judicial nominating commission is scheduled to interview candidates May 9.

The commission will then make recommendations to Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr., who will select a judge at a time of his choosing.

Kane's retirement comes on the heels of James B. Dudley leaving the bench Jan. 7. He had served as a Howard Circuit Court judge since 1989.

The finalists to fill Dudley's position are District Judge Louis A. Becker; Richard S. Bernhardt, an assistant attorney general; Carol A. Hanson, district public defender for Howard and Carroll counties; Mary V. Murphy, a prosecutor in Howard's state's attorney's office; and Paul M. Vettori, a litigation attorney.

The governor will choose Dudley's replacement at a time of his choosing.

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