WINFIELD, W.Va. -- Pointing at photos of former Judges James Holliday and O.C. Spaulding, new Putnam Circuit Judge Joseph Reeder said he has big shoes to fill.
"They are two of the finest we've had," said Reeder, who was sworn in as judge on Tuesday.
Photos of both Holliday and Spaulding hang in what is now Reeder's courtroom.
Reeder, who defeated Democrat Robert Leslie in last month's election, will serve the remainder of Spaulding's term, into 2016. Spaulding retired last year after being diagnosed with Lou Gehrig's disease. He had been judge for 19 years.
"It's a lot to follow one of the finest judges in West Virginia," Reeder said.
Holliday, who served as circuit judge in Putnam for 16 years, read Reeder the oath of office in front of about 100 people who gathered in his courtroom for the ceremony.
Reeder said he plans to model himself after Spaulding and Holliday and also Judge Phillip Stowers, the Putnam Circuit's other judge. As an attorney, Reeder had cases in front of Spaulding and Stowers.