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A story in the March 9, 2009 edition of the Baltimore Sun mentioned Venable partner W. Warren Hamel as one of the leading picks to replace U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein, a George W. Bush appointee, when he leaves the position.

Although observers thought many, if not all, of the nation’s 93 federal prosecutors would be fired shortly after Barack Obama took office in January, the new president asked those who had not already quit to stay in their positions until successors could be found.

Rosenstein is popular with Maryland politicians on both sides of the aisle, and it is possible he could be asked to serve another term.

"It's a great office with a really rich history, and it would be a real privilege to lead it for the next four years," said Hamel, who's on a short list of replacement possibilities mentioned in legal circles.

In addition to Hamel, other names mentioned as possible candidates include Stuart O. Simms of Brown, Goldstein & Levy; Jane F. Barrett, director of the Environmental Law Clinic at the University of Maryland, College Park; Zuckerman Spaeder's Gregg L. Bernstein; and Assistant U.S. Attorney Paul M. Tiao.

U.S. attorneys are considered the nation's legal leaders in their respective regions, conducting most of the trial work in which the United States is a party.