For Immediate Release - March 06, 2009


BOSTON- Friday, March 06, 2009 - Governor Deval Patrick today appointed the Honorable Charles B. Swartwood, III (Ret.), currently of Boston and Cape Cod, and a longtime Worcester County resident, to the State Ethics Commission. Swartwood, former Chief Magistrate Judge of the U.S. District Court, will serve as Chair of the Commission, replacing E. George Daher, whose term has expired.

"Judge Swartwood is widely respected for his understanding of the law and his common sense approach to resolving legal matters," said Governor Deval Patrick. "He will bring a wealth of experience and strong sense of fairness to the Ethics Commission."

Currently serving as a mediator and arbitrator for JAMS in Boston, Judge Swartwood has more than 40 years of trial experience. He is a fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers and was a trial lawyer for 29 years with the Worcester firm of Mountain, Dearborn & Whiting. Most recently, as a trial judge for 12 years in the federal court system, he presided over cases in virtually all areas of the law and for seven years, actively participated in settling cases through the Federal District Court's ADR program. He also served for three years as Special Justice in the Central District Court of Worcester.

"Judge Swartwood's experience and practical approach to his work over the course of his career will add great value to the Ethics Commission's deliberations," said Lieutenant Governor Timothy Murray.

In addition to his experience as a federal magistrate and state court judge, Swartwood has been appointed on several occasions by the Supreme Judicial Court as a special commissioner to review judicial conduct matters. He is also a former member of the Board of Bar Overseers, serving as the board's Vice Chair from 1984-1985.

The State Ethics Commission is made up of five members, with three appointments made by the Governor, one by the Attorney General and one by the Secretary of State. The Commission is responsible for enforcing the state's conflict of interest and financial disclosure laws and has jurisdiction over state, county and municipal employees. Swartwood is Governor Patrick's first appointment to the commission. Members' terms expire after five years.