District of Columbia Court of Appeals Chief Judge Eric Washington is interested in a third term leading the city's highest local court, according to an announcement today from the District of Columbia Judicial Nomination Commission.
Washington's second four-year term will expire in August. He isn't guaranteed redesignation however – any regular active judge on the appeals court is eligible to apply. Washington, along with any other judge interested in the job, will have to submit a statement of interest by April 15.
Lawyers, members of the public, and organizations can also nominate a judge for the position, according to the commission, but they have to first get the judge's consent. The commission will accept letters or recommendation or endorsements through May 15 and offer an opportunity for public comment on the candidates once they've applied.
The commission is planning to sponsor a public forum for the chief judge candidates on June 5 at the Court of Appeals courthouse. It hosted a similar forum for District of Columbia Superior Court Chief Judge Lee Satterfield last year when he was up for redesignation as chief (he was unopposed).
Washington joined the appellate bench in 1999 after serving as a judge in Superior Court for four years. Before becoming a judge, he went back and forth between private practice and government service at the federal and local level. He recently completed a one-year term as president of the Conference of Chief Justices, a national organization that represents the interests of state courts.
The seven-member nomination commission, chaired by U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan, will pick the next chief judge. Other members include William Lucy, a vice president at the AFL-CIO; Natalie Ludaway of Leftwich & Ludaway; Dickstein Shapiro's Woody Peterson; Venable's Karl Racine; the Rev. Morris Shearin Sr.; and Grace Speights of Morgan, Lewis & Bockius.
National Law Journal photo by Diego M. Radzinschi.