This January, litigants in the Eastern Panhandle of West Virginia will be experiencing some significant changes. We are going to have two new judges on the bench. Honorable David H. Sanders will be retiring after 24 years as a Judge for West Virginia’s 23rd Judicial Circuit. Last spring he explained why he was retiring, "There are a lot of good people out there, and it's time to let somebody else have it." I will particularly miss Judge Sanders given his support for restorative justice and mediation.
Last May, Eastern Panhandle voters selected Laura Faircloth and Bridget Cohee to join the bench. Ms. Faircloth is a native of Berkeley County and has practiced law since 1984. She has served as president of some organizations including the Berkeley County Bar Association and the West Virginia Trial Lawyers Association. Ms. Cohee is licensed in both Maryland and West Virginia and has practiced law for fifteen years. She has demonstrated a commitment to improving the welfare of West Virginia’s children and has volunteered with Burke Street Promise Neighborhood.
On October 14, 2016, Chief Judge Christopher Wilkes issued an Administrative Order that describes how the new workload will be allocated between the judges. A copy of that order can be reviewed here: ADMINISTRATIVE ORDER. As an attorney in this district I am looking forward to seeing how these changes will impact litigants in this region.