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JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Gov. Phil Bryant has appointed a new circuit judge for Mississippi’s largest county.

Joseph Anthony Sclafani of Clinton becomes a judge April 23. He will succeed Judge William A. Gowan Jr., who retired March 31.

Sclafani will serve the rest of the term, which expires in January.

Candidates have a May 11 deadline to qualify for this and other judicial races that will be on the November ballot.

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Sclafani earned his law degree from Mississippi College in 1999 and worked as a law clerk for Judge E. Grady Jolly of the U.S. 5th Court of Appeals.

From 2000 to 2003, Sclafani worked for a law firm in Palo Alto, California. Since 2003, he has been in private practice with the Jackson-based law firm of Brunini, Grantham, Grower and Hewes.