RaquinMercer is pleased to announce its newest association: the Honorable Gary E. Bair, recently retired from the Circuit Court for Montgomery County Maryland, is joining RaquinMercer as Of Counsel.
Judge Bair brings exceptional and incomparable legal experience. His knowledge of trial, appellate, and post-conviction work as a defense attorney, representative of the State, and Judge, make his association with RaquinMercer invaluable. Judge Bair has argued over 150 cases before Maryland’s appellate courts and the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. He is a member of the United States Supreme Court bar and he has argued cases before the Supreme Court such as Maryland v. Pringle, 540 U.S. 366 (2003), a landmark Fourth Amendment case he won nine to zero.
Judge Bair distinguished himself in all the legal fields of his career. As an Associate Judge for Montgomery County, Maryland, he presided over criminal, civil, family, and juvenile trials. He provided early leadership to develop and implement the Mental Health Court Program, over which he then co-presided for four years. In 2017, he received the Wayne Fenton Memorial Award from the National Alliance on Mental Illness for the creation and implementation of the Mental Health Court in Montgomery County, Maryland.
Judge Bair brought to the bench an extensive knowledge of appellate practice. During his tenure as an associate judge, Judge Bair was specially appointed to the Court of Special Appeals on six occasions, to sit as a member of a three-judge panel of that court. He authored twelve opinions, including two reported opinions, in both civil and criminal cases.
Before joining the bench, Judge Bair had a successful, statewide private practice as a partner and defense lawyer at Bennett & Bair for over seven years (2004-2012). He handled appeals in Maryland state courts and the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. He has had an extensive post-conviction practice in state court, as well as federal habeas proceedings. His post-conviction practice included seeking modifications of sentence, challenging illegal sentences, and pursuing writs of actual innocence and coram nobis. Judge Bair’s extensive knowledge and experience in standards of professional responsibility and competence for criminal defense attorneys earned him recognition as an expert by Maryland state courts and the Office of Bar Counsel of the District of Columbia.
Judge Bair was the Solicitor General for the State of Maryland for criminal cases at the Attorney General’s Office from 2002 to 2004 and Chief of the Criminal Appeals Division from 1987 to 2002. He has excelled in his criminal appellate litigation in the Maryland appellate courts and the United States Supreme Court. Judge Bair became a distinguished federal habeas corpus litigator in the United States District Court for the District of Maryland and the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. From 1984 to 1987, Judge Bair was Chief of the Medicaid Fraud Control Unit of the Attorney’s General Office where he prosecuted white collar Medicaid provider fraud. He litigated and handled major cases, and made policy decisions in all investigations.
Although he represented the State of Maryland for more than 20 years, Judge Bair started his legal career on the defense side as a supervising attorney for the Criminal Justice Clinic at American University Washington College of Law (1977-1979). He became the Director of the Criminal Justice Clinic and an Adjunct Professor of Law from 1980 to 1982. Judge Bair litigated many cases in the trial courts. He handled major felony trials, such as the death penalty trial of Jack Jones (Stephanie Roper case), which he co-chaired, and he successfully avoided a death sentence for his client. Judge Bair also was an Assistant Public Defender at the Maryland Office of the Public Defender in Prince George’s County (1979-1980) where he represented clients in misdemeanors and felony jury trials.
Judge Bair has long been recognized as a leader by the legal community. In 2014, he received the prestigious Heeney Award from the Maryland State Bar Association for Exemplifying the Highest Professional Standards and Achievement During His Distinguished Career. Judge Bair is a past Chair of two Sections of the Maryland State Bar Association: the Section of Criminal Law and Practice, and the Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar. He was also President of the Montgomery County Inn of Court from 2016 to 2017. Judge Bair presented before state-wide organizations, bar associations, and judicial conferences, including before the Judicial College of Maryland. He published books, law reviews articles, and other authoritative materials that earned him the esteem of his fellow judges and attorneys.
On behalf of RaquinMercer and its clients, we welcome Judge Bair as Of Counsel!