U.S. District Court Judge Clay Land, 54, will assume the role of chief judge of the Middle District of Georgia on Oct. 1.
Land will be taking over for Judge C. Ashley Royal, who works out of the Macon office. There are four federal judges in Middle District, which is a sprawling 70-county district that stretches from the South Carolina line north of Athens to the southwest corner of the state.
“It just increases some of the administrative responsibilities throughout the Middle District,” Land said this week.
The responsibilities, according to the Deskbook for Chief Judges, U.S. District Court are: strategic leadership; court-management oversight; case-management oversight; plans and reports; requests and appeals to the circuit judicial council; sensitive issues of judicial performance; and establish liaison with outside groups.
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The Middle District has judges in Macon, Columbus and Albany. Those judges also hold court in Athens and Valdosta.
The chief judge serves a seven-year term, and the appointment is based on seniority.
Land, 54, was appointed to the federal bench in September 2001 by President George W. Bush. He was confirmed by the U.S. Senate and became a federal judge on Dec. 21, 2001.
Land was a Columbus attorney who served on Columbus Council and was a Georgia state senator prior to his appointment to the federal bench.