Two judges were tapped as new chief district court judges for their respective districts on April 4. Judge James Hill was named chief district court judge for Judicial District 14, which covers Durham County, effective April 6, and Judge Bill Southern was named chief district court judge for Judicial District 17B, which covers Stokes and Surry counties, effective May 1.
Hill replaces Chief Judge Marcia Morey, who has announced her resignation. Hill joined the district court bench in 2003 after practicing privately in Durham for 25 years.
Southern will succeed Chief Judge Charles Neaves Jr. upon his retirement. Southern has served as a district court judge since 2008, and previously served as an assistant district attorney.
Appointments to the chief judge position are made by Chief Justice Mark Martin of the Supreme Court.