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Appointment of Gina L. Simms as U.S. Magistrate Judge

Monday, November 20, 2017

The judges of the United States District Court for the District of Maryland are pleased to announce the appointment of Gina L. Simms to the position of United States Magistrate Judge.  Ms. Simms will take the oath of office in the U.S. Courthouse in Greenbelt this afternoon.  A formal ceremony will be held on December 8, 2017.
Ms. Simms is a graduate of Swarthmore College (1987) and the George Washington University Law School (1992).  Upon graduation from law school, she was a judicial law clerk to the Honorable Curtis E. von Kann in the District of Columbia Superior Court.  Upon completing her clerkship, Ms. Simms worked as an Associate at the Robinson Law Firm in Washington, D.C.  Between 1994-2011, she served  first as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the District of Columbia, and then later as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the District of Maryland.  While working as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in D.C., she served as an Associate Independent Counsel and as part of a team investigating a former U.S. Secretary of Labor.  Following the Deepwater Horizon disaster, she was detailed to the U.S. Department of the Interior as a Counsel in the Investigations and Review Unit where she investigated oil and gas companies engaged in offshore oil production.  From 2011 until her appointment, she was in private practice, first as a Partner at Ober, Kaler, Grimes & Shriver, PC and then as a Shareholder at Baker, Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz., PC.  While in private practice, she focused on white collar criminal and civil defense, internal investigations, and corporate compliance issues.
United States Magistrate Judges are appointed by the district judges for a term of eight years and are eligible for reappointment to successive terms.  The position filled by Ms. Simms became open when Chief U.S. Magistrate Judge William G. Connelly retired from the bench on September 30, 2017.  A merit selection panel composed of attorneys and other members of the community reviewed all qualified applications before recommending a slate of candidates to the full bench for review.  Ms. Simms was selected from this slate.