Gov. Larry Hogan on Wednesday appointed a district court judge and a veteran appellate attorney to the Baltimore City Circuit Court, as well as a Baltimore prosecutor and corporate attorney to district court judgeships in the city.
Hogan also selected a Baltimore County prosecutor for a district court seat in the county.
“The swift appointment of qualified individuals to serve across our state’s justice system is vital to our commitment to serve the people of Maryland and preserve the rule of law,” Hogan said in a statement announcing the five appointments. “I am happy to offer my sincere congratulations to each of these dedicated appointees and I have confidence that they will be strong advocates for the law.”
Hogan elevated Gregory Sampson, who has served on the district court in Baltimore since 2009. Sampson, a graduate of the University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law, had been a master of chancery in the Baltimore City Circuit Court’s division on juvenile causes and spent seven years at the public defender’s office in the city.
Assistant Maryland Attorney General Robert K. Taylor Jr. will fill a second vacancy on the city’s circuit court. Taylor, also a UM Carey Law graduate, has served since 2005 in the attorney general’s criminal appeals division. Before joining the government, Taylor was an associate at the Baltimore law firms Ingerman & Horwitz LLP and Hoffman & Hoffman P.A.
For the district court in the city, Hogan selected Assistant Baltimore City State’s Attorney Catherine Chen, a prosecutor since 2014. Chen previously served as a staff attorney at House of Ruth and at the Maryland Crime Victims’ Resource Center Inc. The Brooklyn Law School graduate also worked at the New York law firm Tabat, Cohen & Blum LLP and as a state attorney for the New York Administration for Children’s Services.
Geoffrey Hengerer, counsel at Keller Foundations LLC, will be joining Chen on the district court bench. Hengerer, a major and judge advocate general in the Marine Corps Reserve, worked at Silverman, Thompson, Slutkin & White LLC in Baltimore and Steptoe & Johnson LLP in Washington. He is a graduate of the University of Baltimore School of Law.
In Baltimore County, Karen Pilarski, who has spent her entire dozen-year career as an assistant Baltimore County state’s attorney, will be taking the bench in district court there. She graduated from the University of Baltimore School of Law.