Robert C. Murphy Courts of Appeal Building
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|For Immediate Release||CONTACT:||Rita
Sally Rankin 410-260-1488
Baltimore City’s Judge in Charge Prepares to Pass the Baton
(Baltimore City, MD – September 30, 2005) After 10 years as judge in charge of the Family/Juvenile Division for the Circuit Court for Baltimore City, Judge Martin P. Welch is preparing to step down from the position. Judge Welch will be succeeded by Judge Edward R.K. Hargadon, who will become the judge in charge of the Family/Juvenile Division effective March 6, 2006.
During his decade as judge in charge, Judge Welch fostered the collaboration of city and state agencies involved in the development and construction of the Baltimore City Juvenile Justice Center, in which the court is located. He served as a member of the Governor’s Systems Reform Initiative, chairman of the Maryland Department of Juvenile Justice Advisory Board, and chairman of the Juvenile Law Committee of the Maryland Judicial Conference. He also oversaw the expansion of the juvenile Court when termination of parental rights cases and adoption cases were transferred from the domestic court to juvenile. Finally, he undertook creating the process for the application of the Adoption and Safe Families Act (ASFA) and permanency planning for children in foster care.
“I congratulate Judge Welch on 10 years of service as judge in charge of our juvenile docket. He has been a tireless, forceful leader in the field of juvenile law and is recognized nationally for his innovative approaches to juvenile justice,” said Baltimore City Circuit Court Administrative Judge Marcella A. Holland. “He has laid an extremely good foundation for Judge Hargadon to build upon to keep our Juvenile Court in the forefront of all others in technology, programs, collaboration, and providing fair, well-reasoned solutions to juvenile problems.”
As an associate judge, Judge Welch will continue to be actively involved in judicial education, serving as the co-director of Maryland’s New Trial Judges School and lecturing frequently on the law and procedure in delinquency, child abuse, and neglect, and termination of parental rights. In 2000 he coordinated an agreement amongst various agencies of the Juvenile Court in which all participants agreed to work toward detention reform and to promote the nexus between child welfare and delinquency. His efforts resulted in major systemic reforms, which have become a model for the entire state.
Judge Hargadon, who was appointed an associate judge in 2002, currently hears cases on the Felony Trial Docket. He has served for a year in the Juvenile Division and substitutes there regularly.
“I am confident that Judge Hargadon will continue the rich tradition of leadership in the Juvenile Court,” Judge Holland said. “He is well equipped to take that court through the 21st century with greater technology, more collaboration with our partners in the juvenile justice system and to stay abreast of the national trends in juvenile law. He has a strong sensitivity to the problems and needs of children and their parents and will make an ideal working leader. He is not one to ask anyone else to do more than he will do himself.”
of the University of Maryland Baltimore County and the University
of Maryland School of Law, Judge Hargadon worked previously as an
assistant attorney general when he served as chief counsel to the
Maryland Department of Transportation.
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