Bar endorses for judge

Published 11:10 pm Friday, May 3, 2013

The Suffolk Bar Association this week sent a letter to Gov. Bob McDonnell endorsing prosecutor Bob Sandwich for an empty Circuit Court judgeship.

McDonnell is expected to name a selection soon for the bench vacated by the age-related mandated retirement of Judge William R. Savage III. The General Assembly concluded a session in April without being able to come to an agreement on a replacement.

According to the bar association’s bylaws, members of the bar can decide at a regular meeting whether to undergo the process of endorsing. The association decided to do so at its last regular meeting, President Susan Walton said in a phone interview Friday.

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Notice was given to the 60-some members, and a special meeting was held Thursday.

“We allowed anyone wishing to do so to seek the bar’s endorsement,” Walton said. “There were numerous individuals who chose to do that.”

Votes were held on each candidate individually, and a two-thirds vote of those present was required to endorse each candidate. All, none or some candidates could have received endorsements.

About 35 members were at the meeting, Walton said.

She declined to name those who did not receive the bar’s endorsement.

Former City Councilman Robert Barclay, an attorney at Cooper, Spong and Davis of Portsmouth, and current City Attorney Helivi Holland, in addition to Sandwich, went through the General Assembly’s interview process in Richmond.