Yesterday it was determined that the current assistant chief judge, Kathleen Gearin, will take over as chief when Gregg Johnson completes his term next month. In an election by their peers on the court, Gearin defeated Judge William Leary, who was also vying for the spot. Judge Edward Cleary will serve as the new assistant chief judge.
Gearin, a 1975 graduate of William Mitchell College of Law, has served on the Ramsey County District Court bench since she was elected to the position in 1986.
Contests for chief are not unheard of, but they are unusual.