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Hogan will consider three judges, attorney for vacant high court seat

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan will likely select the next judge on the state’s high court from among three judges and an attorney.

The Appellate Judicial Nominating Commission has sent to Hogan’s desk a list of candidates for the Court of Appeals seat occupied by Judge Mary Ellen Barbera, who reaches the state’s mandatory judicial retirement age of 70 on Sept. 10.

The candidates are Court of Special Appeals Judges Steven Bennett Gould and Terrence Mark Ranko Zic; Montgomery County Circuit Judge Sharon Veronica Burrell; and attorney James Bradford McCullough of Lerch, Early & Brewer Chtd. in Bethesda.

Hogan is not bound to nominate the judge from the submitted list, though it is gubernatorial custom. The nominee will be subject to Senate confirmation.

Barbera, who serves as chief judge, holds the seat on the seven-member high court reserved for an attorney or judge who resides in Montgomery County. Her retirement will also give Hogan the opportunity to name the Court of Appeals’ next chief judge.