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Gallagher confirmed to U.S. District Court seat

After being nominated twice, and after months of waiting, Judge Stephanie Gallagher was confirmed to the U.S. District Court in Baltimore by the Senate Wednesday.

Gallagher, who has been a magistrate judge with the court since 2011, fills a vacancy created by the February 2016 retirement of Judge William D. Quarles Jr.

Gallagher was nominated to the position in 2016 by President Barack Obama, then renominated by President Donald Trump last year. She received a favorable report by the Senate Judiciary Committee in June but was not confirmed before the Senate’s August recess. She was confirmed by voice vote Wednesday.

Gallagher began her legal career with a two-year clerkship for U.S. District Judge J. Frederick Motz in Baltimore, after which she worked as a litigation associate at Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP in Washington, according to a biography provided by the White House.

From 2002 to 2008, Gallagher was an assistant U.S. attorney for Maryland, serving in the criminal division. Gallagher then co-founded and served as a partner in the Baltimore law firm Levin & Gallagher LLC, handling white-collar criminal defense, complex civil litigation and employment disputes.

Gallagher’s confirmation now leaves a vacant magistrate judge position. Federal magistrate judges are appointed by majority vote of the active district judges of the court and serve an eight-year term, according to the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts website.

Gallagher was unavailable for comment Thursday.

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