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A lawyer from the state Department of Justice was appointed Monday to a vacant Dane County judicial post.

Assistant Attorney General Timothy Samuelson was appointed by Gov. Scott Walker to replace retired Dane County Circuit Judge John Markson, who left this month after nearly 10 years as judge for Branch 1.

There was no immediate word on whether Samuelson intends to run for a full six-year term next spring.

Samuelson, who lives in Middleton, is a 1998 graduate of the Indiana University School of Law, and received his undergraduate degree from Valparaiso University.

Samuelson has been with the Department of Justice (DOJ) since 2012.

During that time, he has been director of the Medicaid Fraud Control and Elder Abuse Unit, and was deputy director for the Special Litigation and Appeals Unit.

Samuelson was also one of the state DOJ lawyers who in 2014 argued in U.S. District Court and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit in favor of maintaining a ban on gay marriage in Wisconsin.

Samuelson was a finalist last year to be administrator of the state Ethics Commission, a job that went to Brian Bell.

Before coming to DOJ, Samuelson worked for two Chicago law firms: Schopf & Weiss and Iwan Cray Huber Horstman & VanAusdal.

In a statement, Walker described Samuelson as a “hard-working, principled and respected attorney” and said that his “diverse legal background and respect for the rule of law assure me that he will make an excellent judge.”

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