Magistrate and administrative law judges dominated the pool of Washington lawyers who applied to fill an upcoming vacancy on the District of Columbia Superior Court.
Of the 21 applicants hoping to fill Judge A. Franklin Burgess Jr.'s seat after he retires, seven are Superior Court magistrate judges and five are local administrative law judges. The other nine attorneys come from private practice, civil legal services groups, and government agencies.
Burgess is set to step down August 3 after serving 30 years on the bench; he has said he plans to ask for appointment as a senior judge. The District of Columbia Judicial Nominations Commission, the local body that recommends applicants to the White House for consideration, is accepting comments on the applicants by April 29.
The seven-member commission will recommend three attorneys to the White House. President Barack Obama can nominate one of the three recommended lawyers for Burgess' seat, or choose from other active lists of applicants already recommended by the commission for other open seats. The president's nominee will go before the U.S. Senate for a confirmation hearing.
The magistrate judge applicants include Presiding Magistrate Judge William Nooter, along with Joseph Beshouri, Karen Howze, Noel Johnson, Elizabeth Mullin, Lori Parker, and Elizabeth Wingo. The administrative law judge applicants are Claudia Crichlow, Sharon Goodie, Paul Handy, Leslie Meek, and Principal Administrative Law Judge Steven Wellner.
Two civil legal services lawyers applied: Sean Staples, guardian ad litem project director of the Children's Law Center and Vytas Vergeer, legal director of Bread for the City. From the private practice side, solo practitioner Guyler Hill and Valencia Rainey, an associate at Gebhardt & Associates, applied.
Two city government lawyers applied: Maria-Claudia Amato, general counsel for the D.C. Department of Corrections, and Andrew Fois, deputy of the public safety division in the attorney general's office. From the U.S. attorney's office, Assistant U.S. Attorney Ann Carroll and Teresa Howie, deputy of the Superior Court division, applied. On the criminal defense side, Jason Tulley, special counsel to the director of the Public Defender Services for the District of Columbia, applied.
The seven-member nominating commission is led by U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan. Other members include William Lucy, a vice president of the AFL-CIO; Natalie Ludaway of Leftwich & Ludaway; Woody Peterson of Dickstein Shapiro; Venable's Karl Racine; the Rev. Morris Shearin Sr.; and Grace Speights of Morgan, Lewis & Bockius.
A previous version of this article misspelled Maria-Claudia Amato's name.