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Judicial Screening Fall 2016
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Fairfax Circuit Court Judicial Screening Online Membership Vote

The online membership vote for candidates for the anticipated Circuit Court judicial vacancy will begin on November 1, 2016 and end on November 15, 2016 at 4:00 PM

    The following are general definitions of the judicial ballot voting categories. A vote must be entered for each applicant. If you do not have sufficient knowledge about an applicant, your vote should be "No Opinion.”
    • ENDORSED: By voting "ENDORSED" you are affirmatively asserting your belief that the particular applicant’s name should be submitted to the legislature for consideration as a judicial applicant by the Fairfax Bar Association. 
    • NOT ENDORSED: By voting "NOT ENDORSED" you are asserting your belief that the particular applicant’s name should not be submitted to the legislature for consideration as a judicial applicant by the Fairfax Bar Association.
    • NO OPINION: A "NO OPINION" vote means you do not feel you have sufficient knowledge of the applicant to vote "ENDORSED" or "NOT ENDORSED".

    Candidate Information:
    Below you will find the following information for each candidate.

    • Biographical information submitted by the candidate
    • Photograph
    • Findings of the FBA Judicial Screening Panel that screened the candidates
    • Executive Summary as written by the FBA Judicial Screening Panel (click on the candidate's name to view this)

    Note: the Executive Summary for each candidate will also be found on the ballot – click on “Read A Full Description” under each candidate to review the Executive Summary as you vote.




    David Bernhard
    Committee Recommendation - Highly Recommended

    David Bernhard, 54, is a versatile attorney with a career spanning 27+ years. Admitted in Virginia, Maryland, DC, Missouri, he has tried hundreds of jury trials including complex litigation. In 2005, David created VADefenses Listserv, an invaluable criminal law resource. His appeals include Virginia’s first civil Gideon case and the seminal Benitez decision policing abusive litigation practices. David helped reconstitute, and from 2011 to 2014, was Co-Chair of the Fairfax Bar Criminal Law Practice Section, for which effort he was recognized with an FBA President’s Award. In 2012 he was named a “Leader in the Law” by Virginia Lawyers Weekly.


    Hon. Manuel A. Capsalis
    Committee Recommendation - Recommended

    Manuel Capsalis is a judge in the Fairfax County General District Court, appointed in 2015, and previously served as a substitute judge since 2003. He practiced criminal and civil litigation for 27 years and served as the Town of Herndon’s prosecutor for 24 years.


    Manny is a past-president of the Virginia State Bar, the Virginia Law Foundation, and the Arlington County Bar Association. He graduated from Duke University (B.A.) and George Mason University (M.A. and J.D.) and was Editor-in-Chief of the Law Review. He volunteers at a local elementary school and for many years coached youth sports. 


    William P. Daly, Jr.
    Committee Recommendation - Highly Recommended

    Bill is a principal at Rees Broome, PC with 30 years experience in civil litigation.  He graduated from Johns Hopkins University (BA) and SUNY/Buffalo (JD).  Bill is Past President of the Fairfax Bar Association, President-Elect of the Fairfax Law Foundation, Chief Co-Editor of the Fairfax Circuit Court Manual, and General Counsel of the Tysons Chamber of Commerce.  Bill is a Substitute Judge for the Fairfax County District Courts, an ABA Delegate, taught the VSB Carrico Professionalism class and VSB Law School Professionalism class, and serves on the VSB Fifth District Disciplinary Committee and the Board of Zoning Appeals for Vienna.

    Jonathan D. Frieden
    Committee Recommendation - Recommended

    Jonathan Frieden is an AV-rated litigator and shareholder at Odin, Feldman & Pittleman, P.C., where he has practiced for 19 years and served as lead counsel in more than 170 cases in state and federal courts of record.  As a Fairfax Substitute Judge, he has heard more than 3,100 cases and decided more than 330 contested civil, criminal, and domestic matters.  Jon is an Adjunct Law Professor at GMU, Secretary and Public Relations Chair for the Fairfax Law Foundation, and a Conciliator for the Fairfax Circuit Court.  He graduated from UVa (B.S., Systems Engineering) and the University of Richmond (J.D.). 

    Chidi I. James
    Committee Recommendation - Recommended

    I am a partner with Blankingship & Keith in Fairfax, Virginia. I mostly do personal injury cases, including wrongful death, products liability, and inadequate security cases. I was an Arlington County Law Clerk from 2001-2002, then did Medical Malpractice litigation in Washington, D.C., before joining Blankingship & Keith in 2003. I am a former president of the Northern Virginia Black Attorneys Association and am a VSB Bar Council representative for the 19th Judicial Circuit. I am also the Staff Judge Advocate for the 113th Wing DC ANG at Andrews AFB. I am married and have 3 teenage children.

    Daniel T. Lopez
    Committee Recommendation - Highly Recommended

    Mr. Lopez is an equity partner at BrigliaHundley, PC. He grew up in the D.C. metropolitan area. He graduated from the George Washington University School of Law in 1996. His practice focuses on criminal defense, immigration and domestic. Mr. Lopez worked at Fairfax, Public Defender’s Office for five years. He then co-founded the firm of Lopez, Meleen & Sprano. Mr. Lopez has served as a substitute judge in General District Court and the Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Courts since 2007. He is married to Kathryn Gray, a public school teacher. They have three children, Rafael, Nicolas and Carmina. 

    Anita V. McFadden
    Committee Recommendation - Recommended

    I have practiced in Fairfax County since 1999, and I have extensive experience in criminal and civil litigation. I have served as an Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney, criminal defense counsel, insurance defense counsel, plaintiff’s counsel and I currently primarily practice in the area of family law. I have served as a general and executive member of various bar associations, including the Fairfax Bar Association, Virginia State Bar and the Northern Virginia Black Attorney’s Bar Association. I have a genuine interest in serving the public, the legal community and the judiciary, remaining committed to hard work, respect, integrity and knowledge.


    David A. Oblon
    Committee Recommendation - Recommended


    Experienced Trial Lawyer:

    • Civil and criminal litigator at Albo & Oblon for over 20 years.
    • Represented Verizon in complex, multi-jurisdiction civil litigation to the Supreme Court.
    • Defended criminal cases ranging from murder to reckless driving.
    • Taught over 30 CLEs.
    • Co-authored legal treatise on criminal law. 
    Judicial Experience:
    • Substitute Judge for almost a decade.
    • Taught law to Fairfax's full time judges six times, and the state's substitute judges twice.
    • Commissioner in Chancery. 

    Community Leadership:

    • Virginia State Bar Council member (three terms).
    • Chairman of a Bar Foundation.
    • Legal Services Board Member.
    • Cubmaster, PTA leader, Temple Board Member, and other civic and charitable leadership.


    Tania M. L. Saylor
    Committee Recommendation - Qualified

    I was born and raised in Rockville, Maryland. I graduated from the University of Virginia in 1999 with a B.A. in economics. I received my law degree from The George Washington University School of Law in 2003. My legal career has included the defense of personal injury and medical malpractice claims, business litigation and fiduciary litigation. In 2010, I co-founded Peterson Saylor, PLC, a boutique firm focusing on fiduciary litigation matters. In 2011, I married my law partner, George Peterson, and we currently reside in Clifton, Virginia with our two children, Thomas, 4, and Michael, 2. 


    August W. Steinhilber, III
    Committee Recommendation - Recommended

    August Steinhilber, a partner with Brault Palmer Steinhilber & Robbins LLP, has practiced law there since graduating from law school (William & Mary, 1984). His primary practice is civil litigation; other litigation includes traffic, criminal, family matters and business. He serves as a substitute judge for the Virginia District Courts and is a mediator.


    Mr. Steinhilber is AV rated (Martindale-Hubbell); selected as one of Washingtonian magazine’s best legal minds; is a regular lecturer on trial matters; and has chaired three FBA committees. His community involvement includes leadership roles in scouting, youth sports and school functions. He and his wife have three children.





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