Republicans nominate Kelsey

Published 9:55 pm Tuesday, April 12, 2011

State House Republicans on Tuesday nominated Suffolk resident D. Arthur Kelsey for an open position on the Virginia Supreme Court.

Kelsey served as a Circuit Court judge in Suffolk, Southampton and Isle of Wight from 2000-2002 before moving on the state appeals court, where he now presides.

After graduating in 1985 from the College of William and Mary’s Marshall-Wythe School of Law, he began his legal career as a law clerk for a U.S. District Court judge. He then went into private practice at Hunton & Williams for about 13 years, until he began serving on the Circuit Court.

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The Virginia State Bar Judicial Nominations Committee recorded an 11-0 vote to give Kelsey an endorsement of “highly qualified.” The committee ranked Kelsey highly in areas including legal ability, integrity, judicial temperament, impartiality and diligence.

Delegate S. Chris Jones is carrying the legislation to nominate Kelsey. He also nominated Kelsey to the circuit court in 2000.

Jones was not available for comment Tuesday, but in January said Kelsey would be “a wonderful addition to the Supreme Court if he were selected.”

In its evaluation, the nominations committee called Kelsey a “prolific writer” who has authored more than 175 written opinions as a circuit court and appeals court judge. He also has created a number of articles that have appeared in various legal periodicals.

The nominating committee also said Kelsey’s experience in handling criminal and domestic relations cases while presiding in the circuit court and appeals court have compensated for the absence of such experience during his years in private practice.

Kelsey also has served on a number of judicial council committees and also as an adjunct law professor at Regent University as well as his alma mater.