Adkins Nominated For Cathell’s Seat

BERLIN – It appears this week local attorney Joe Moore was not successful in his attempt at gaining a nomination to sit on the bench of Maryland’s highest court as the Judicial Nominating Committee last week forwarded just one name to the governor for the appointment, but O’Malley could ask the committee to reconsider adding one or more names, including Moore’s, to the list.

Moore in December officially filed an application to replace Judge Dale Cathell as the Maryland Court of Appeals judge for the state’s First Appellate Circuit, which includes the nine counties of the Eastern Shore. Cathell officially retired in July having reached the mandatory retirement age of 70, but continues to sit on the bench pending the appointment of his replacement.

Moore, 65, was joined on the short list of applicants by sitting Court of Special Appeals Judge Sally Denison Adkins and Easton attorney Christopher Burlee Kehoe. Each of the three candidates was interviewed by Judicial Nominating Committee members last Friday, but the committee forwarded just one name, Adkins, to the governor for the Court of Appeals seat for his consideration.

However, insiders close to the process suggest it might not be over. In his executive order creating his judicial nominating commissions, O’Malley clearly states the panel “should endeavor to recommend at least three qualifying candidates for each seat,” but the order does not mandate the nominating commission to forward more than one candidate for consideration.

According to a report in the Maryland Daily Record, nominating commission chairwoman Sheila K. Sachs said, “the governor might have us reconvene because I think he would generally like more names than one.”