West Virginia Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin has appointed Harrison County assistant prosecutor Kurt W. Hall the circuit judge for the 26th Judicial Circuit serving Lewis and Upshur counties.
Hall will fill the vacancy created by the retirement of Thomas Keadle in December 2012.
Hall's appointment takes effect immediately.
"Kurt has an established history of working for the people of West Virginia as a public defender and, more recently, as an assistant prosecuting attorney. He will work hard for the people of Lewis and Upshur counties in this new role," Tomblin said.
Former Randolph County Judge John Henning has presided over cases in the 26th Judicial Circuit as a senior-status judge since Keadle's retirement. Keadle has served as a senior-status judge in the 22nd Circuit since his retirement, filling the vacancy created when Judge Donald Cookman was appointed to the West Virginia Senate.
Hall received a Bachelor of Science in mining engineering technology from Fairmont State University in 1990 and worked as a project engineer and certified mine foreman's assistant before earning his doctorate of jurisprudence in 1995 from the West Virginia University School of Law. Following law school, Hall worked as a law clerk in an Elkins law firm. He later served as a public defender in the 2nd Judicial Circuit and then as an assistant prosecuting attorney in Randolph County. For the past 11 years, he served as an assistant prosecuting attorney in Harrison County.
Hall made an unsuccessful bid for the Lewis County Prosecuting Attorney position in May 2012, finishing third in the Democratic primary.
He is a member of the State Bar and other community organizations, including the Lewis County Democratic Executive Committee and the Lewis County Senior Center Board of Directors.
Hall resides in Jane Lew with his wife, Liz. The couple has three children.