The District of Columbia Judicial Nomination Commission (“Commission”) has forwarded to President Barack Obama the names of three lawyers for his consideration in selecting a nominee to fill a judicial vacancy on the Superior Court of the District of Columbia. The President has sixty (60) days to select a nominee to fill the vacancy created by the retirement of Judge Robert I. Richter. The Commission recommends the following candidates to fill this vacancy:
Philip Christopher Andonian is Counsel at Bredhoff & Kaiser, P.L.L.C., where his practice focuses on litigation on behalf of labor unions and their members at the local, state, and federal levels, as well as white collar criminal defense and grand jury representation. Prior to joining Bredhoff & Kaiser, Mr. Andonian was a staff attorney at the Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia, where he represented juveniles and adults charged with criminal offenses ranging from misdemeanors to serious felonies. He also appeared before the District of Columbia Court of Appeals. Since 2007, Mr. Andonian has been an active member of the adjunct faculty in the Trial Advocacy Program at American University Washington College of Law. He has also conducted workshops and lectures covering a variety of litigation issues and has coached several student mock trial teams in national competitions. Since 2012, Mr. Andonian has been a Board Member of the Free Minds Book Club & Writing Workshop, a nonprofit organization that introduces young people incarcerated at the District of Columbia Jail to the transformative power of books and creative writing. Mr. Andonian received a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and Psychology from the University of Michigan and earned his law degree from Santa Clara University. Following law school, Mr. Andonian served as a law clerk for the Honorable Robert E. Morin of the Superior Court of the District of Columbia.
Robert Alan Salerno is a partner at Morrison & Foerster LLP, where he represents corporations and individual clients in federal criminal investigations and related proceedings. He also serves as the pro bono partner for the law firm’s Washington, DC office. From 1998 to 2006, Mr. Salerno was a partner at DLA Piper US LLP (formerly Piper & Marbury). Throughout his career, Mr. Salerno has had a broad civil litigation and white collar criminal defense practice, and has litigated in courts in the District of Columbia and throughout the country. Since 2008, Mr. Salerno has served two 3-year terms on Hearing Committees of the DC Board on Professional Responsibility. For the last four years, he has been a Hearing Committee Chair. In that role, he leads three- member panels that conduct evidentiary hearings on formal charges of professional misconduct by members of the DC Bar. Mr. Salerno received a Bachelor of Arts degree in History and Development Studies from Brown University and earned his law degree from the University of Virginia School of Law.
Darlene Michele Soltys is a Senior Attorney in the Violent Crime and Narcotic Trafficking Section of the United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia, where she prosecutes complex, multi-defendant, high-profile cases in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia. She has received Special Achievement Awards in 2006, 2007, 2012, and 2013, as well as a Director’s Award for Superior Performance as an Assistant United States Attorney in 2007. Prior to joining the United States Attorney’s Office, from 1996 to 2004, Ms. Soltys served as an Assistant States’ Attorney for Prince George’s County, Maryland, where she prosecuted homicide and child abuse cases in the Circuit Court. From 1992 until 1996, Ms. Soltys served as an Assistant Corporation Counsel for the Office of Corporation Counsel for the District of Columbia (now the Office of the Attorney General), where she handled juvenile matters. Ms. Soltys received a dual Bachelor of Arts degree in History and Political Science from the University of Maryland and earned her law degree from Georgetown University Law Center. After law school, Ms. Soltys served as a law clerk for the Honorable Gregory E. Mize of the Superior Court of the District of Columbia.
Questions concerning the District of Columbia Judicial Nomination Commission should be directed to the Executive Director at (202) 879-0478 or via email at [email protected].