NC Court of Appeals gets 1st openly gay judge after GOP judge takes surprise early retirement

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Governor Roy Cooper’s appointment marks the first openly gay judge on the North Carolina Court of Appeals .

BY ANNE BLYTHE AND MARK BINKER for the News & Observer:

 Gov. Roy Cooper on Monday appointed John Arrowood to fill a seat on the state Court of Appeals vacated the same day by Doug McCullough, a Republican who reaches the mandatory retirement age next month.

The appointment of the Democrat comes three days after Cooper vetoed a bill that would have decreased the size of the appeals court from 15 judges to 12.
In a power struggle between the Republicans at the head of both General Assembly chambers and the Democrat in the executive office, Republicans adopted a bill that would have curtailed Cooper’s ability to appoint anyone to replace McCullough. But the law was not in effect because of the Democratic governor’s veto – even though the legislature is expected to enact it through a veto override…
Arrowood served on the appeals court in 2007 and 2008 after former Gov. Mike Easley appointed him to fill a vacant seat.

Arrowood, who is openly gay, specialized in employment and commercial law at James, McElroy and Diehl.

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