Governor Hogan Announces New Chief Legal Counsel, More Than 300 Additional Appointments
ANNAPOLIS, MD—Governor Larry Hogan today announced the appointment of Christopher Mincher to serve as Chief Legal Counsel, succeeding Michael Pedone, who has served in the post since February 2020. Pedone will return to practicing law in the private sector.
The governor is also naming Heather Shek, currently Director of the Office of Governmental Affairs for the Maryland Department of Health, to serve as Deputy Legal Counsel. Shek succeeds Stephanie Meighan, who has been appointed to the Board of Contract Appeals.
“Chris Mincher is an exceptionally committed public servant who has been an integral member of our administration for nearly six years,” said Governor Hogan. “We have always had a strong and experienced team in the Office of Legal Counsel, and I know Chris will continue this legacy. Mike Pedone was part of the core team that led us through the COVID-19 pandemic and recovery. I am deeply grateful for Mike’s wise counsel and many contributions, and I wish him and his family the best.”
“It is an extraordinary privilege to serve as Governor Hogan’s chief legal counsel, and I am humbled to be entrusted with such an important role,” said Mincher.
Christopher Mincher. Chris Mincher has worked in the Office of Legal Counsel since 2016, serving the past two years as the senior deputy. Prior to joining the Governor’s legal office, Mincher practiced in the business litigation group at a Baltimore law firm. He was a clerk for the Hon. Robert N. McDonald on the Court of Appeals of Maryland after beginning his legal career in the chambers of the Hon. Benson Everett Legg on the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland. Mincher received a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Virginia and Bachelor of Arts degrees from the University of Maryland.
Heather Shek. During her time with the Maryland Department of Health (MDH), Heather Shek served as the director, deputy director, and assistant director of the Office of Governmental Affairs, where provided leadership and expertise on state legislative, regulatory, and budgetary issues having an impact on MDH and its programs and services, as well as served as the legislative liaison between MDH, the Governor’s Office, the Maryland General Assembly, state agencies, and various advocacy groups and organizations. Shek was born and raised in Upstate New York and has her Juris Doctorate from the University of Maryland Law School, a Master’s degree in Forensic Psychology, and Bachelor’s degrees in Psychology and Criminal Justice from the University of New Haven.
Mincher’s appointment is effective July 18.
More Than 300 Additional Appointments
In addition, the governor announced that he has appointed 316 individuals to various boards and commissions since the end of the legislative session.
“Marylanders deserve the most capable, experienced, and dedicated representatives,” said Governor Hogan. “These appointments reflect the diversity of our state, and I am confident that these appointees will help us continue to change Maryland for the better.”
A list of appointments can be found here. Among the appointees are the following:
Board of Contract Appeals
Michael L. Carnahan, Jr.—Current clerk to the Board of Contract Appeals since 2015. He is an expert in legal research and decision preparation. Over 20 years of service to the Board.
Sonia Cho, Esq.—Assistant Attorney General in the Contract Litigation Division in the AG office since 2017. Formerly practices law with DLA Piper in business and insurance litigation.
Stephanie M. Meighan, Esq.—Deputy Legal Counsel to the governor, formerly in practice with Bowen & Jensen in Towson. Graduate of Georgetown University Law.
Maryland Auto Insurance Fund
Kristopher C. Marrion—Vice President and Branch Manager of Marylalnd and D.C. for Erie Insurance appointed as representative of the Maryland Industry Automobile Insurance Association.
Maryland Health Care Commission
Kenneth R. Buczynski, M.D.—Wellspring Family Medicine in Oakland where he provides outpatient, inpatient, and surgical obstetrical care and is a part-time emergency physician at Garrett Regional Medical Center.
Awawu A. Ojikutu—Addiction Nurse Practitioner at Avery Road Treatment Center, and the Lead Psych Nurse for Inova Fairfax Hospital, specializing in psychiatric mental health and behavioral health. Currently pursuing her doctorate in nursing practice at UMD School of Nursing.
Maryland Tax Court
William L. Callahan, Jr. Esq.—Sole Practitioner, William Callahan, P.A. and Vice President and General Counsel, Tree Services, Inc.
Crystal S. Richard, Esq.—Partner at Thompson and Richard, LLP. Her practice area includes civil litigation, family law contracts, leases and real estate law. Former President of the Queen Annes Bar Association.
Sabrina J. Turner, Esq.—Staff Counsel for Allstate/Encompass/Esurance. Graduate of UM Law and holds a Masters of Civil Engineering from Vanderbilt University.
Anthony C. Wisniewski, Esq.—Designated as Chief Judge of the Court. Wisniewski has served as Associate Judge.
Morgan State University Board of Regents
William A. Sherman, II, Esq.—Attorney and Managing Partner with Dinsmore & Shohl, LLP. Active with his firm’s defense of mass tort class action suits with an emphasis on product liability defense. Member of the Product Liability Advisory Council.
Burney J. Hollis, Ph.D.—Former Dean Emeritus and longest serving dean of the College of Liberal Arts for Morgan State University. Dr. Hollis has been Morgan’s exemplar and benchmark of excellence in teaching, in scholarship, and in service to the profession and the University for 48 years.
Bennett Wayne Resnick—President and CEO of Martin’s Caterers. Resnick has been in the family business since 1978 with his father, and the Resnick Family has a long history of support of Morgan State University.
Reverend Harold A. Carter, Jr., D.Div.—Pastor for the New Shiloh Baptist Church in Baltimore for over 20 years. Graduate of the United Theological Seminary in Dayton, Ohio, earning his Doctor of Ministry degree.
University System of Maryland Board of Regents
Edward McDonald—Retired Chief of Staff for Maryland Department of Transportation. Previously served as Chief of Staff for U.S. Rep. Howard Coble for 30 years. Currently Alumni President and graduate of Towson University.
Yehuda Neuberger—Principal of SIM Holdings. Served as Chair of Jewish Community Federation of Baltimore and as National Political Chair for the American Israel Public Affairs Committee. Graduate of Harvard Law.
Julianne A. Oberg—Director of Economic Development for Calvert County. Previously served a 14-year career with the Maryland Department of Agriculture, including the last four years as the Deputy Secretary of the department. Graduate of University of Maryland College Park.