Posts Tagged ‘Middle District of North Carolina’
Wednesday, December 1st, 2010

We already know about Ripley Rand’s songwriting ability, but little did we know that his creative skills didn’t end there.

Rand, who was nominated on July 28 to be the U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of North Carolina, recently helped out his college friend Dan Angus Morrison by doing the graphic design for the cover of his book, Bandwidth: A Novel.

The book, about greed and terrorism, is self-published by Morrison, who when discussing ideas for the cover asked Rand if he was willing to design it himself.

“He had some good ideas so I said, ‘Why don’t you cobble something together?’ and it turned out beautiful,” Morrison said.  “It was a very simple, easy process…. He just really nailed it.”

As a longtime friend, Rand was gracious enough not to ask for payment, although Morrison did thank him with “a cheap bottle of wine,” Morrison joked.

Morrison thinks Rand’s creative streak will be an asset to him if he is confirmed as U.S. Attorney.

“[His creativity is a] nice feather in his cap,” Morrison said, adding that it is a good “complement to his legal work.”

“I think a creative side to anyone in any profession is a plus.”

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Thursday, November 18th, 2010

The Senate Judiciary Committee approved three U.S. Attorney nominees by voice vote at its meeting Thursday.

They are:

Charles M. Oberly III (Drinker Biddle)

Charles M. Oberly III (Drinker Biddle)

-- Charles Oberly (Delaware): The of counsel to Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP was nominated on Sept. 16 to succeed Colm Connolly, who resigned as U.S. Attorney in 2007. Read more about Oberly here.

Ripley Rand (Gov)

- Ripley Rand (Middle District of North Carolina): The North Carolina Superior Court judge was tapped on July 28 to succeed Anna Mills S. Wagoner, who stepped down as U.S. Attorney in August. Read more about him here and here.

Conner Eldridge (Summit Bank)

- William Conner Eldridge Jr. (Western District of Arkansas): The special deputy prosecutor for the Prosecuting Attorney’s Office of Clark County, Ark., and former chief executive officer for Summit Bank in Arkansas was nominated on Sept. 29 to succeed Robert Balfe, who resigned as U.S. Attorney in January 2009. Read more about Eldridge here.

The committee has now endorsed 75 of Barack Obama’s U.S. Attorney nominees, 72 of whom have won Senate confirmation. The panel has yet to consider another two would-be U.S. Attorneys. There are 93 U.S. Attorney posts.

Tuesday, November 16th, 2010

The Senate Judiciary Committee is scheduled to vote on a pair of U.S. Attorney nominees at its meeting Thursday.

They are:

Charles M. Oberly III (Drinker Biddle)

Charles M. Oberly III (Drinker Biddle)

-- Charles Oberly (Delaware): The of counsel to Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP was nominated on Sept. 16 to succeed Colm Connolly, who resigned as U.S. Attorney in 2007. Read more about Oberly here.

Ripley Rand (Gov)

- Ripley Rand (Middle District of North Carolina): The North Carolina Superior Court judge was tapped on July 28 to succeed Anna Mills S. Wagoner, who stepped down as U.S. Attorney in August. Read more about him here and here.

The panel will also consider Western District of Arkansas U.S. Attorney nominee William Conner Eldridge Jr. at its meeting.

The committee has yet to schedule votes for another two would-be U.S. Attorneys. The committee has approved 72 of Obama’s U.S. Attorney nominees, all of whom have won Senate confirmation.

Friday, September 10th, 2010

The Justice Department has been without a known songwriter since Attorney General John Ashcroft left five years ago. But the drought could soon be over.

Ripley Rand (Gov)

Ripley Rand, who was nominated on July 28 to be the U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of North Carolina, contributed lyrics and back-up vocals to “Don’t Do The Math,” which was released in 2008 on “Danceable in Victor,” the second album by The Balsa Gliders, a North Carolina indie-pop band.

“He always sort of helped me ghost write lyrics from time to time,” lead singer Charles Marshall, a partner at the law firm of Brooks, Pierce, McLendon, Humphrey & Leonard LLP in Raleigh, N.C., told Main Justice.

The song does not have the patriotic fervor of Ashcroft’s “Let The Eagle Soar.” Rather, the lyrics of “Don’t Do The Math” paint the picture of a girl, who resembles swimsuit model and actress Cheryl Tiegs.

Marshall said the song is “almost just a narrative about a dream sequence,” but doesn’t have any particular significance.

“I would love to tell you it had a meaning,” he said. Rand did not respond to a request for comment from Main Justice.

Marshall and Rand met in law school at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and went on to host a rock and pop music show on WXDU-Durham 88.7 FM. Rand was a disc jockey at the radio station from 1994 to 2000, according to his Senate Judiciary Committee questionnaire.

Rand then aided his friend with The Balsa Gliders, which formed about a decade ago. Marshall said Rand has come into the studio for recordings, but has rarely performed live with the six-member band.

“He’s been a great friend,” Marshall said. “He’s given great assistance to the band.”

Ripley Rand, the U.S. Attorney nominee for the Middle District of North Carolina, contributed lyrics and back-up vocals to “Don’t Do The Math” on the “Danceable in Victor” album by The Balsa Gliders, an indie-pop group.

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Tuesday, August 31st, 2010

Ripley Rand (Gov)

Ripley Rand (University of North Carolina, University of North Carolina School of Law) was nominated on July 28 to be the U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of North Carolina. He would succeed Anna Mills S. Wagoner, who resigned as U.S. Attorney in August.

His vitals:

  • Born in Durham, N.C, in 1967.
  • Has been a University of North Carolina School of Law Alumni Association board member since 2007. He was also on the Board of Visitors at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill from 2004 to 2008.
  • Has served as a special superior court judge for the state of North Carolina since 2006. He was also a special superior court judge from 2002 to 2006. Between the two stints as special superior court judge, he was a resident superior court judge.
  • Co-authored a children’s book, “I Want to Go to UNC!,” which was published in 2005.
  • Served on the Wake County Bar Association/Tenth Judicial District Bar Association boards from 2006 to 2007.
  • Has been the director/secretary of Summit House of North Carolina, a non-profit organization that helps mothers convicted of non-violent crimes, since 2003.
  • Was a political organizer The Mike Easley Committee (for Governor) in 2000 and The Mike Easley Committee (for Attorney General) in 1992.
  • Was an assistant district attorney in Wake County, N.C., from 1997 to 2002, serving as the director of the domestic violence unit and later as a member of the dangerous offenders task force.
  • Was an assistant district attorney in Cumberland County, N.C., in 1997.
  • Clerked for U.S. District Judge James A. Beaty Jr. in the Middle District of North Carolina from 1996 to 1997.
  • Was a research assistant for North Carolina Supreme Court Chief Justice Burley B. Mitchell Jr. from 1995 to 1996.
  • Was a researcher for the law firm of Michaels and Jones (now Martin & Jones PLLC) in Raleigh, N.C.
  • Was a disc jockey at WXDU-Durham 88.7 FM from 1994 to 2000.
  • Was a summer associate at Womble Carlyle Sandridge & Rice PLLC in Winston-Salem, N.C., in 1993 and 1994.
  • Was a summer associate at Manning Fulton & Skinner PA in Winston-Salem, N.C., in 1994.
  • Was a research assistant at the North Atlantic Assembly (now NATO Parliamentary Assembly) in 1991.
  • Was an assistant in 1990 at Lithotripters Inc. (now owned by Prime Medical), which was a company that specialized in instruments that pulverize kidney stones.
  • Was a projectionist at Ram Triple Movie Theatre in 1990.
  • Is a member of the Wake County Chitlin’ Club, a group of men who meet once a year to “eat country cooking and talk about politics.”
  • Contributed lyrics and vocals to “Don’t Do the Math” on the “Undefeated in Apex” album by The Balsa Gliders, an indie rock group.
  • Has tried about 20 jury trial cases and “hundreds” of non-jury trial cases as a prosecutor. He served as sole counsel in the majority of his cases.
  • Presided over more than 150 jury trials and about 9,000 non-jury proceedings as a state judge.

Click here for his Senate Judiciary Committee questionnaire.

On his Office of Government Ethics financial disclosure, Rand reported making $113,616.52 as a state judge since January 2009. He also reported $63 earned from the sale of his book since 2009.

UPDATE: On his Senate Judiciary financial disclosure, Rand reported assets valued at almost $1.2 million, mostly from real estate, and $142,800 in liabilities from mortgages, for a net worth of more than $1 million.

Thursday, August 5th, 2010

A George W. Bush administration appointee will step down Friday as U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of North Carolina to pursue elected office.

Anna Mills Wagoner (DOJ)

U.S. Attorney Anna Mills Wagoner, who has led the Greensboro, N.C.-based office since 2001, will vie for a seat on the Rowan County Superior Court, the Salisbury Post reported. She said it was “an honor and a privilege” to serve in the Bush and Barack Obama administrations.

“I am proud of the commitment and professionalism demonstrated by the U.S. Attorney’ s Office staff and the federal, state and local law enforcement officers with whom we have worked,” Wagoner said in a statement. “Together we have made our local communities and our nation a better, safer place to live, ensured the firm but fair enforcement of the criminal laws, and protected the interests of the United States.”

Wagoner is one of 13 U.S. Attorneys appointed during the Bush administration who are still holding their jobs more than a year and a half after Obama became president. Obama nominated Ripley Rand last week to replace her.

She will run against Rowan County District Court Judge Marshall Bickett in the election to replace retiring Judge John Holshouser, according to the Salisbury Post.

“The lessons learned as U.S. Attorney have given me a tremendous working knowledge of the state and federal court system as well as current law enforcement and legal issues facing our country and Rowan County,” Wagoner said in a statement to the newspaper. “I would be honored to continue serving Rowan County as its next Superior Court judge.”

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Friday, June 25th, 2010

The North Carolina State Bar has suspended the license of a former Assistant U.S. Attorney this month for practicing law without an active license, according to an order from the bar’s disciplinary commission.

The North Carolina law license of David P. Folmar Jr., who represented the Justice Department from November 2003 to March 2009 without a valid license, is suspended for five years. But he can apply to have the suspension lifted after a year and a half, according to the order dated June 11, 2010.

Folmar’s license was initially suspended in November 2003 for failing to obey mandatory continuing legal education obligations. He also was licensed to practice law in Florida, but his Florida Bar license was retired before November 2003. An Assistant U.S. Attorney must have an active license from at least one state bar to practice law.

The ex-prosecutor did not notify his supervisors in the Middle District of North Carolina U.S. Attorney’s office about his suspension. Middle District U.S. Attorney Anna Mills Wagoner fired Folmar in March 2009. She then informed lawyers and judges who worked with Folmar on hundreds of cases. The DOJ Office of Professional Responsibility also disciplined him, according to the order.

The former Assistant U.S. Attorney was “having personal and family problems” and “suffering from depression and turned to alcohol” when he practiced law without a license, according the order.

Folmar was convicted in 2008 of driving while impaired. Police reports said he had almost three times the legal blood-alcohol content of 0.08.

He sought counseling and has shown “extreme remorse,” the order said. Folmar had an “unblemished” record and has a “professional reputation of being an honest lawyer,” according to the order.

Wade M. Smith, Folmar’s lawyer, did not immediately respond to requests for comment from Main Justice.

UPDATE

Smith told Main Justice that it was a “serious, serious mistake” for Folmar to practice law without a valid license. But the lawyer said he thinks there is still a place for Folmar in the legal community.

“I see so much good in him and I’m keeping my fingers crossed for him,” Smith said.

Thursday, January 7th, 2010

The North Carolina bar filed disciplinary charges against a former federal prosecutor for practicing law without an active license, the Legal Profession Blog reported yesterday.

David P. Folmar Jr. represented the Justice Department from November 2003 to March 2009 without a valid license from a state bar, according to a complaint filed by the North Carolina bar to its disciplinary hearing commission. An Assistant U.S. Attorney must have an active license from at least one state bar to practice law. Folmar’s Florida State Bar license was retired and his North Carolina State Bar license was suspended for failing to obey mandatory continuing legal education obligations.

The ex-prosecutor did not tell his supervisors in the Middle District of North Carolina U.S. Attorney’s office about his suspension, according to the complaint.

“[Folmar] falsely held himself out to the courts, his colleagues and the public as authorized and qualified to practice law,” the complaint said.

Middle District U.S. Attorney Anna Mills Wagoner fired Folmar in March 2009, according to the Salisbury Post. She then notified federal judges and lawyers who worked with Folmar on hundreds of cases, the newspaper said.

Wagoner said in a March 2009 letter to Chief U.S. District Court Judge James A. Beaty Jr., who serves in the Middle District, that she didn’t believe that Folmar’s suspension “had any material effect on any case,” according to the Post.

The newspaper said in May that the DOJ Office of Professional Responsibility was investigating the matter.

The Post later reported that Folmar was convicted in 2008 of driving while impaired. Police reports said he had almost three times the legal blood-alcohol content of 0.08.

Friday, July 10th, 2009

Sen. Kay Hagan (D-N.C.) submitted her recommendations to replace North Carolina Middle District U.S. Attorney Anna Mills Wagoner and Western District acting U.S. Attorney Edward Ryan. Read her letter to President Obama this week here.

The Middle District candidates (with biographies from Hagan):

-Lee Farmer has been the member-manager for the law offices of R. Lee Farmer since 2004. Prior to that, Farmer was a partner at Farmer and Watlington LLP for 20 years, gaining extensive background in civil litigation and the general practice of law. He has worked with various local, state, and federal law enforcement and public agencies.

Ripley Rand (Gov)

Ripley Rand (Gov)

-Ripley Rand has served as a Superior Court judge in Raleigh since 2002. Prior to that, Rand was an assistant district attorney in the Tenth Prosecutorial District of North Carolina directing the Domestic Violence Unit and participating on the Dangerous Offenders Task Force.

-Susan Taylor has over 30 years of North Carolina judicial and prosecutorial experience. Since 2002, Taylor has served as a resident Superior Court judge in District 20A and 20B. Prior to that, for 12 years she served as a District Court judge in the Twentieth Judicial District, and another 12 years as an assistant district attorney.

The Western District candidates (with biographies from Hagan):

Peter Anderson (Anderson Terpening)

Peter Anderson (Anderson Terpening)

-Peter Anderson is a partner at Anderson Terpening, PLLC where he specializes in federal criminal defense, complex commercial litigation and corporate compliance counseling. Prior to that, he served as the federal prosecutor with the Environmental Crimes Section of the Department of Justice and the Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Western District.

-Danny Davis has served as the chief district court judge for the 30th Judicial District of North Carolina since 2004. In that role, Davis oversees five district court judges and 31 magistrates, while also preparing the court schedule for a seven-county district. Prior to his, Davis served as a district court judge for 20 years and was a partner at Noland, Hold, Bonfoey & Davis PA for three years.

Anne Tompkins (Alston and Bird)

Anne Tompkins (Alston and Bird)

-Anne Tompkins is a partner at Alston and Bird, LLP concentrating on government investigations and compliance. In 2004 and 2005, Tompkins was one of four Assistant U.S. Attorneys who were part of the initial Iraqi Regime Crimes Liason Office in Baghdad, Iraq, under the Office of the Deputy Attorney General. She has also served as the assistant district attorney for Mecklenburg County.