Shake Up on the Benches With Phil Ginn’s Retirement at End of Year; Horne To Succeed; McEntire To Follow

Published Wednesday, December 10, 2014 at 11:06 am
Judge Phil Ginn swears in Commissioners David Blust (left), Jimmy Hodges and Billy Kennedy earlier this month. This was one of the last batches of elected officials for Ginn to swear in to office. Photos by Jesse Wood

Judge Phil Ginn swears in Commissioners David Blust (left), Jimmy Hodges and Billy Kennedy earlier this month. This was one of the last batches of elected officials for Ginn to swear in to office. Photos by Jesse Wood

By Jesse Wood

Dec. 10, 2014. With Senior Resident Superior Court Judge Phillip C. Ginn retiring at the end of the year, a couple of new appointments have been recently been made in the 24th Prosecutorial District, which covers Avery, Madison, Mitchell, Watauga and Yancey counties.

Gov. Pat McCrory appointed Chief District Court Judge R. Gregory Horne to fill the vacancy of Ginn, who is a graduate of Appalachian State University and UNC School of Law.

“Judge Horne has spent most of his legal career in public service, first as an assistant district attorney, and for the past 10 years, as a district court judge,” McCrory said in a statement. “His dedication, professionalism and thorough knowledge of North Carolina law will make him a tremendous asset to the Superior Court bench.”

According to a release from the governor’s office, Horne served as district court judge for 10 years before becoming chief judge earlier this year. Prior to that, his public service also included four years as assistant district attorney in the 24th District, after which he worked in the private sector as an attorney with law offices of Kelly Johnson and the law offices of Jim Deal.

To fill the void left with Horne’s departure, Chief Justice Mark Martin appointed Judge Ted McEntire to succeed Horne as chief district court judge, the N.C Administrative Office of the Courts announced on Tuesday.

“Judge McEntire has served with distinction as district court judge, and I am confident he will provide the strong leadership necessary for the successful administration of the district courts throughout the district,” Martin said in a statement.

According to the release, McEntire served as district court judge for the past five years. Prior to that the UNC School of Law graduate was a private attorney from 1995 to 1997 and assistant district attorney from 1997 until 2009.

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