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Second appellate judge vacancy nearing

January 1, 2007
Indiana Court of Appeals Judge John T. Sharpnack has officially announced his last day will be May 3, 2008, and the process to appoint a successor will begin in the coming weeks.

Judge Sharpnack plans to stay on with the appellate court as a senior judge following his leaving the bench, which comes just days before his 75th birthday and mandatory retirement. He is the second appellate judge in a year to leave the court; Judge Patrick D. Sullivan ended a 38-year career on the court July 31.

A Columbus native, Judge Sharpnack was appointed by Gov. Evan Bayh to the court in 1991 with the creation of a new fifth district. He earned his law degree from the University of Cincinnati in 1960 and worked in the antitrust division of the U.S. Department of Justice in Washington, D.C., before returning to Columbus as a partner at Sharpnack Bigley David & Rumple.

The Judicial Nominating Commission plans to send formal notice of the vacancy within two weeks, counsel Meg Babcock said. A tentative schedule is that applications will be due Nov. 1, with first interviews scheduled Nov. 12, and second interviews Dec. 11 or 12, she said. The fifth district covers the state, and an appointee would face statewide retention votes.
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