Current place(s) of employment: Circuit Court Judge for Carroll County (2 years)
Education:University of Baltimore School of Law, Juris Doctorate, 1990; Allegheny College, Meadville, Pa., B.A. in Political Science, 1987
Community groups involved in: As a coach, volunteer or proud parent, over the years I have supported: Sandymount Rec Council Softball; Roaring Run Lions Club/Finksburg Baseball; Winfield Rec Softball; Maryland Stars Softball; Westminster Titans Baseball Club; North Carroll Hotshots Softball; and various Westminster High School athletic programs.
Why are you interested in running for this office?
I have been a sitting Judge since my appointment by Governor Hogan on January 27, 2016. In accordance with the Maryland Constitution, I am required to stand for election in 2018 to retain my seat.
Explain why you are qualified for the office you seek.
My twenty-two years as a local lawyer and two years as a sitting judge make me uniquely qualified to retain my seat on the Court. I practiced law exclusively in Carroll County where my clients included local citizens, small businesses, volunteer fire departments and municipalities. In December, 2015, I was one of nine applicants for a vacancy on the Court. After an exhaustive screening process by the Trial Courts Nominating Commission, I was one of four applicants (2 men and 2 women) found to be “highly qualified” and recommended for the vacancy. Governor Hogan then interviewed each finalist and I was humbled upon being selected.
Since my appointment, I have strived to achieve a reputation as a firm but fair judge who makes common sense decisions through even-handed application of the law. I am endorsed by the Carroll County Bar Association and am supported by the law enforcement community.
In contrast, both of my opponents applied unsuccessfully to be a judge. One applied unsuccessfully four times in Carroll County while the other was unsuccessful once in Howard County where, until very recently, he resided. However, by paying the $50 filing fee, they are permitted to appear on the ballot.
What are the three main issues you wish to address during your campaign and how do you plan to address them?
Judges are prohibited under the Maryland Code of Judicial Conduct from taking a position on matters that are likely to come before them as a judge [See Md. Rule 16-813, Judicial Code of Conduct, Canon 5(B)(1)(d)]. As a result, I am significantly limited in what “issues” I may comment upon. Within the ethical limitations imposed upon me, the three “issues” most important to me are:
Common sense application of the law without resorting to strained legal interpretations respecting the separation of powers between the judicial, executive and legislative branches of government.
Firm but fair disposition of all matters I am called upon to decide.