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McDonnell names judges

Gov. Bob McDonnell has filled two vacant circuit court judgeships with candidates having experience in prosecutor’s offices.

Halifax County Commonwealth’s Attorney Kimberley Slayton White was named to the 10th Circuit bench, while Tazewell County General District Judge Jack S. “Chip” Hurley Jr. was appointed in the 29 circuit.

White and Hurley fill judgeships left vacant by the 2012 General Assembly. Under the Virginia constitution, their continued service on the bench will require approval by the 2013 General Assembly.

Hurley has been a general district judge for seven years and currently serves as chief judge. Prior to taking the bench, he practiced law in Southwest Virginia for 19 years in private practice and as a prosecutor for the town of Tazewell and Bland County. He fills the bench seat left vacant when Judge Teresa M. Chafin was elected to the Court of Appeals of Virginia.

White has been Commonwealth’s Attorney for eight years. She has previously served as an assistant and deputy commonwealth’s attorney for the city of Lynchburg and was a special assistant United States Attorney for the Western District of Virginia. She is a past chair of the Virginia State Bar Committee on Lawyer Discipline. She fills a judgeship left vacant by the 2011 retirement of Judge Richard S. Blanton of Farmville.

“Both Kim White and Judge Hurley are respected in the legal field and active members of their communities. Throughout their careers, they have demonstrated legal acumen and fairness to defendants, victims of crime, and other litigants,” McDonnell said in a news release.

McDonnell left unfilled a vacancy on the circuit bench in the 6th Circuit, where Judge Samuel T. Campbell of Prince George retired in January. The House had nominated Nathan C. Lee of Hopewell, but the Senate did not nominate a candidate for that judgeship.

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