RICHMOND, Va. (Legal Newsline) - The Virginia General Assembly filled two state Supreme Court vacancies on Friday.

According to the Roanoke Times, the Legislature voted to move up two judges, Elizabeth McClanahan and Cleo Powell.

McClanahan is a judge on the state Court of Appeals. She was elected in February 2003. Before becoming an appellate judge, she worked as a partner at the law firm Penn, Stuart and Eskridge and served as the chief deputy attorney general.

Powell also is a judge on the Court of Appeals. She was appointed in August 2008 and later was elected to a full eight-year term. She is the first black woman named to the Court of Appeals, and she will become the first black woman to serve on the state's high court.

Before joining the Court of Appeals, Powell worked as a general district and circuit judge in Chesterfield County.

Justice Leroy R. Hassell Sr.'s death in February and the retirement of Justice Lawrence Koontz created the two Supreme Court vacancies.

According to the Times, the Legislature also elected Virginia Beach attorney Glen Huff and Stephen McCullough, the senior appellate counsel in the Attorney General's Office, to replace McClanahan and Powell on the appeals court.

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