The Sun

Fund-raiser set for challengers to new judges
350 people are expected tonight at Columbia event

by Norris P. West SUN STAFF The Baltimore Sun

December 13, 1995 Page(s): 4B
Section: METRO
Length: 299 words
Record Number: BSUN425951


The first major event in Howard County's judicial campaign comes tonight when supporters of two challengers to the pair of new Circuit Court judges hold a
fund-raiser at the Columbia Hilton.

The $35-a-plate event at 6 p.m. will raise money for the campaigns of District Court Judge Lenore R. Gelfman and attorney Jonathan Scott Smith. Calling
themselves more experienced, they are challenging newly appointed Circuit Judges Diane O. Leasure and Donna Hill Staton.

A group named the Committee to Elect the Best says it expects at least 350 people, including county officials, attorneys and business and community leaders, to

"This campaign kickoff will demonstrate that the Howard County community supports Judge Gelfman and Jonathan Smith," said Betty Smith Adams, the campaign

Judge Gelfman and Mr. Smith entered the race Nov. 28 against the two new Circuit judges, who were appointed by Gov. Parris N. Glendening.

Judge Leasure became the county's first female Circuit judge when she was sworn in Nov. 13, and Judge Hill Staton became the county's first black judge to sit on
either the District or Circuit bench when she took office Nov. 20.

The judges are paid about $93,500 a year and must be confirmed by county voters in March for 15-year terms.

Supporters of Judge Leasure and Judge Hill Staton have scheduled their first fund-raiser for Jan. 11 at the Spear Center in Columbia, said Lin Eagan, chairwoman of the Committee to Elect the Sitting Circuit Court Judges.

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