Confidential documents
May 16, 2022

Request to unseal JIRC records denied

The Virginia Supreme Court has denied a newspaper’s request to unseal portions of a judge’s mandamus petition that included documents from her then pending matter before the Judicial Inquiry and Review Committee, or JIRC. “The confidentiality accorded to judicial disciplinary hearings stands in contrast to ordinary civil and criminal trials, which benefit from a long […]

Virginia General Assembly
Mar 21, 2022

Unfinished business: Assembly departs without filling Supreme Court seats

The Virginia General Assembly ended its regular 2022 session on March 12 without electing judges to fill two openings on the Supreme Court of Virginia. Legislators did elect 30 trial court judges late in the session. They also clashed over a senator’s opposition to a retired substitute judge. The Supreme Court impasse was part of […]

Feb 20, 2022

Judge Sharp to retire from 26th Circuit bench

Judge William W. Sharp will step down from the bench after 28 years of service. Sharp, presiding judge of the Warren County Circuit Court, is set to retire June 30, according to a release from the court. Sharp first began serving on the 26th District Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Court on July 1, 1994. […]

Jan 31, 2022

Privacy or secrecy? Legislators want more info on judges they select

Some of the legislators who elect and re-elect the judges of Virginia’s trial and appellate courts say they wish they had more access to information locked away in government file cabinets. One state senator wishes legislators could see more reports on judges’ performance surveys filled out by lawyers and others. Another state senator says the […]

Jan 31, 2022

Three judges passed over in Assembly action

Three judges up for re-election to new terms on the bench were left off the list of judges winning early-session General Assembly approval Jan. 24. Any of them could be approved for new terms later in the session. Legislators removed Chesterfield County Circuit Judge Lynn Brice, Loudoun County Circuit Judge Jeanette Irby and Fairfax County […]

Jan 24, 2022

Assembly to consider 9 more for high court

With the shift in the political makeup of the General Assembly, nine new candidates have emerged for what are now two openings on the Supreme Court of Virginia. Four of the applicants are judges on the Court of Appeals. When voters gave Republicans a majority in the House of Delegates in November, a House leader […]

Dec 26, 2021

Lemons to step down from role as chief justice at end of year

Supreme Court of Virginia Chief Justice Donald W. Lemons will step down from his role as chief justice at the end of the year, according to a press release from the court. Justice S. Bernard Goodwyn has been elected by the justices to become the next chief justice. Goodwyn, who has sat on the court […]

Dec 20, 2021

VSB rates candidates for Supreme Court vacancy

A Virginia State Bar committee has reported recommendations to the General Assembly for 15 candidates for a pending vacancy on the Supreme Court of Virginia. The VSB’s Judicial Candidate Evaluation Committee, or JCEC, rated the candidates as “qualified” or “highly qualified” to serve on the high court. The vacancy on the Supreme Court was created […]

Nov 22, 2021

Senators recommend candidates for federal judgeship

Virginia’s two U.S. senators have recommended two candidates for a vacancy on the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia. In a Nov. 4 letter to President Joe Biden, Sens. Mark Warner and Tim Kaine recommended U.S. Magistrate Judge Elizabeth Hanes and Assistant U.S. Attorney Melissa O’Boyle for the vacancy. “Both would serve […]

U.S. Capitol building
Nov 8, 2021

New judges confirmed to federal bench

Three Virginia federal judgeships have been filled recently as the U.S. Senate confirmed more of President Joe Biden’s judicial nominees. Patricia Tolliver Giles and Michael S. Nachmanoff were confirmed to seats on the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, while Toby Heytens was confirmed to a seat on the 4th U.S. Circuit […]

Oct 11, 2021

VSB to evaluate 18 for Supreme Court vacancy

The Virginia State Bar is set to evaluate 18 candidates for an upcoming vacancy on the Supreme Court of Virginia. The individual selected will replace Judge William C. Mims, who announced his retirement from the bench on July 28. Mims, who has served on the court since 2010, will retire when his term ends on […]

Aug 16, 2021

Eight on deck: General Assembly taps new judges for appeals court

The Virginia General Assembly elected eight new judges to the Court of Appeals on Aug. 10, completing a historic expansion of the court and ushering in new diversity in race, gender and background. The eight new judges, along with their former positions and locations, are:    Dominique A. Callins, attorney, Front Royal Doris Henderson Causey, […]

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