LEWISBURG - A longtime Greenbrier Circuit Court judge has announced his retirement and will vacate his post at the end of October.
Judge Frank Jolliffe, who spent 27 years on the bench, on Aug. 31 sent a letter of resignation to Gov. Joe Manchin, whose office will be responsible for appointing a replacement.
That replacement will serve out the rest of Jolliffe's term, which ends Dec. 31, 2008. Jolliffe's letter of resignation did not offer a specific reason for his choice.
"My decision to submit my resignation was reached after considerable deliberation," Jolliffe's letter said. "I am deeply grateful to the people of the 11th Judicial Circuit for having afforded me the opportunity and the honor to serve as circuit judge."
Jolliffe started in the 11th Circuit, which represents Pocahontas and Greenbrier counties, on July 1, 1979. He was appointed by Gov. Jay Rockefeller and elected to eight-year terms in three separate elections.
His resignation leaves a fourth circuit court judge vacancy in the state, joining the ones in Mercer, Wood and Berkeley counties.
A committee led by Carte Goodwin, who serves as Manchin's chief legal counselor, will organize a committee that will prepare a recommendation to Manchin.
Joining him on the committee will be West Virginia University Law School Dean John Fisher, state Bar President Robb Fisher and at least four other attorneys.
Senior status judges can be used to fill in until a replacement is found. Two retired judges, James Holliday and Arthur Gustke, have been working in Wood Circuit Court for several months.