Lawrence S. Margolis, U.S. Magistrate for the District of Columbia, has been reappointed to a second eight-year term.
Margolis, 43, of Silver Spring, is one of three U.S. magistrates at the federal courthouse in the District. He holds a bachelor of science degree in mechanical and aeronautical engineering from Drexel University in Philadelphia. Because of his scientific background, he has been assigned many patent cases.
Margolis, a magistrate since January 1971, was reappointed by a unanimous vote of the U.S. District Court judges.
While attending George Washington University Law School at night, he worked as a patent examiner at the U.S. Patent Office.
Among the duties of a magistrate are issuing arrest and search warrants, setting bail, deciding pretrial civil motions, holding sanity hearings, monitoring pretrial discovery processes, appointing counsel for indigent criminal defendants, holding settlement conferences in civil cases, presiding at preliminary hearings, conducting jury and non-jury civil trials and holding criminal misdemeanor trials.
"The purpose of the magistrate system is to assist the judges in the performance of their duties," said one court official. "They would handle the more important civil and criminal cases while the magistrates assist in the less important ones."
Margolis is a former president of the Federal Bar Toastmasters Club and a member of the Washington Rotary Club. He served for two years as president of the D.C. chapter of the George Washington University Law Alumni Association and received the George Washington University Distinguished Alumni Service Award in 1976.
He is a frequent guest lecturer and speaker at schools and community organizations. He lectures regularly to the FBI, defense attorneys, prosecutors, U.S. marshals and federal narcotics agents.
He has lived in the Washington area since 1957; he is married and has two children.