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5 finalists named for St. Joseph judgeship

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The St. Joseph County Superior Court Judicial Nominating Commission has selected the five finalists to fill an upcoming vacancy on the court when Chief Judge Michael P. Scopelitis retires in June.

The finalists are Andre B. Gammage, managing partner at Berger & Gammage; Steven L. Hostetler, a partner at Thorne Grodnik LLP; Elizabeth C. Hurley, magistrate judge for the St. Joseph Circuit Court; Mark F. James, associate at Anderson Agostino & Keller P.C. and public defender; and Jeffrey L. Sanford, sole practitioner, deputy public defender and South Bend deputy city attorney.

The finalists’ names will be submitted to Gov. Mike Pence, who has 60 days after receiving the list to select Scopelitis’ replacement. Scopelitis will retire June 3.

This is the second time this year the nominating commission has interviewed candidates. A spokesperson for Pence said he has not made his selection to fill the vacancy that will be created after Judge Roland Chamblee retires March 31. Those finalists are Mary Catherine Andres, St. Joseph deputy prosecuting attorney; attorney Scott Duerring of Duerring Law Offices in South Bend; Gammage; Hurley; and Sanford.

The nominating commission is made up of seven members – three attorneys and three nonattorneys – and is chaired by Justice Mark Massa.

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