Vote to Retain Judge Beckstead and Judge Maciarello in the 2018 Election.

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Judge Kathleen Beckstead
Position: Chief Judge, Wicomico County Circuit Court, 1st Judicial Circuit
Appointed: 1st Judicial Circuit (2000)
Prior Position: Master of Domestic and Juvenile Law, Wicomico County Circuit Court (1996—2000)
Bar Membership: Maryland (1987)
Juris Doctor: University of Baltimore School of Law (1987)
Undergraduate: Bachelor's degree in political science (Villanova University, 1983)

"Judge Beckstead is a consummate professional." So say many citizens who have been before her and worked with her since she was first sworn in as Circuit Court Judge for Wicomico County August 4, 2000. Seventeen years on the bench: Experience counts and she has it.

While working full time in the summer and weekends the rest of the year, to support herself, she entered the University of Baltimore Law School. After her first year of school she volunteered at the private law firm of Webster and Anderson in Salisbury. Her second summer saw her working at the States Attorney’s Office in Worcester County. Following her law school graduation in 1987 she clerked for the Honorable Alfred J. Truitt and the Honorable D. William Simpson at the Wicomico County Circuit Court.

Completing her Clerkship, Beckstead joined the litigation law firm of Anthonelli and Otway in 1988. While there she gained invaluable courtroom experience and tried many criminal and civil trials. She advanced in that firm to partner in 1996 but was soon asked to serve as Wicomico County’s first full time Master of Domestic and Juvenile Law by the Judges of Maryland’s First Circuit.

During her tenure as Master, the Court implemented litigation assistance programs such as mediation, supervised visitation and monitored exchange, co-parenting classes, child counsel fee provisions, and marital property arbitration.

Then, in August of 2000, she was appointed by Governor Parris Glendening to the Circuit Court for Wicomico County. Beckstead continues to oversee cases involving Family law as well as Criminal, Civil, Family, and Juvenile law. In 2004 Judge Beckstead led the development of the Wicomico County Drug Treatment Court; she has presided since its first hearing in 2005.

In 2010, Judge Beckstead was appointed by the Chief Judge of the Court of Appeals to serve as the County Administrative Judge, overseeing all aspects of Court operations including supervision of the judges, officials, and employees of the Circuit Court, judicial assignment, disposition of and control over case assignment, preparation of the Court’s budget and purchases, preparation of the case management plan, jury plan, and continuing of operations plan, and human resources oversight.

Finishing her Administrative Judge assignment in 2015 she returned full time to her first love – trial work. She has continued to serve on numerous law related boards for the improvement of the administration of justice to our community.

Additionally she has been married for 33 years to Richard Beckstead. They have raised two self-sufficient children, Merrill Beckstead and Helena Beckstead. The judge has been a champion for our youth throughout her career. She has served as a mock trial coach and mentor for over ten years. She has been an active member of Law Day, sponsored by the Women’s Bar Association of the Lower Eastern Shore. She was a co-founder of the Eastern Shore Chapter of the Women’s Bar Association.

For a complete listing of her biography, please go to the Maryland Manual online


Judge Matthew Maciarello
Position: Associate Judge, Wicomico County Circuit Court, 1st Judicial Circuit
Appointed: 1st Judicial Circuit (2016)
Prior Position: State's Attorney, Wicomico County, (2011—2016)
Bar Membership: Delaware (2007); Maryland (2003)
Juris Doctor: University of Maryland Carey Law School (2003)
Undergraduate: Bachelor's degree in political science (Salisbury University, 1997)

Judge Matthew A. Maciarello was nominated by the 1st Circuit Judicial Nominating Commission and appointed by Governor Lawrence J. Hogan to serve on the Wicomico County Circuit Court. Surrounded by his family, colleagues, friends, and members of the community, Judge Maciarello was sworn in as a Circuit Court judge on July 22, 2016. Participating in his investiture were two judges that Judge Maciarello clerked for out of law school, the Honorable Theodore R. Eschenburg and Thomas C. Groton, III. During the investiture, one of the speakers at the investiture remarked:

"It’s been said that a Judge should have the qualities of patience, curtesy, tact, firmness, understanding and humility, should be able to deal with people calmly and courteously, should be even-tempered yet firm, open-minded yet willing and able to reach a decision, confident yet not pompous, have a liberal dose of common sense, high moral values, and excellence of character, compassion, empathy, and respect for the essential dignity of all persons, a reputation of honesty, integrity and fairness. Matt possesses all of these traits and more ..."

Judge Maciarello was educated locally, receiving his Associates degree from Wor-Wic Community College (Summa Cum Laude) and a Bachelors of Arts in Political Science from Salisbury University (Magna Cum Laude). The year he graduated from Salisbury University, Judge Maciarello was recognized as the Outstanding Senior Scholar in the field of Political Science. After graduating from Salisbury University, Judge Maciarello worked in the field of government contracting and procurement for three federal agencies. While working full time, Judge Maciarello attended the University of Maryland School of Law at night. He graduated from Maryland Law “with honor,” a designation reserved for those students graduating in the top one-third of their graduating class.

Upon completing a summer associate position and clerkship with the professional malpractice firm, Eccleston & Wolf, PC, Judge Maciarello served as law clerk for the Hon. Theodore R. Eschenburg and Thomas C. Groton, III. Upon completion of this clerkship, Judge Maciarello became an Associate Attorney with Hearne & Bailey, P.A., one of the oldest law offices in Salisbury, Maryland. There he worked in the general practice of law handling matters involving real estate, estate planning and administration, and corporate and commercial law. He was also involved in a variety of civil, domestic and criminal litigation. When asked, Maciarello prides himself on the fact that he worked his way first from intern to associate and finally to partner. While working for Hearne & Bailey, Judge Maciarello sat for and passed the Delaware Bar, later opening the firm’s first Delaware office in Seaford, Delaware.

In 2010, Judge Maciarello was elected State’s Attorney for Wicomico County. As the State’s Attorney for the Eastern Shore’s most populous county, Maciarello was responsible for leading and managing seventeen (17) prosecutors and thirteen (13) administrative professionals. Moreover, he was charged with the oversight of a budget of approximately 2.3 million dollars. While leading and running the office, Maciarello also prosecuted many public interest cases including but not limited to sex offenses, kidnapping, violent assaults and robbery, drug distribution, and homicide.

While he served as leader of the State’s Attorney’s Office, Maciarello’s team received numerous awards including the second highest conviction rate in the State of Maryland for DUIs/DWIs. Additionally, Neighborhood Scout ranked Salisbury Maryland the 3rd Most Dangerous City in America the year Maciarello took office. Seven years later, Neighborhood Scout ranked Salisbury 85th, which Maciarello would state is “not ‘Mission Accomplished,’ but a dramatic improvement for the city.” (See

While Maciarello served as State’s Attorney, he was dedicated to a “community prosecution” model which emphasized that prosecutors were problem solvers in addition to “ministers of justice.” In this role, Maciarello was accessible and involved. The best example of his work in the community was in his work managing the opioid crisis and spike of overdose deaths experienced by the State and the county during his terms of office. Maciarello used a three prong approach to address the crisis that included prosecution, prevention and intervention. His safe streets team vigorously prosecuted repeat drug and violent offenders. He was the first State’s Attorney on the shore and one of the first in the State to create a prosecutor position that was dedicated to understanding and addressing the opioid and heroin epidemic. He worked on a Wicomico Plan for addressing the opioid crisis which was recognized by the State and Federal Government. Part of this plan involved the creation of the Opioid/Heroin Awareness Art and Film Contest which used drug sized money to provide scholarships for children who were able—through the medium of art and film-- to communicate the danger of prescription drug abuse. This contest was recently taken over by the United Way and is now open to all of the schools in Worcester, Wicomico and Somerset Counties. The art created by the children moves from school to school and is used to educate and raise awareness throughout the shore.

Maciarello was also awarded the “Outstanding Public Health Leader Award” for his advocacy and leadership in streamlining the delivery of recovery services on the shore, including the creation of the COAT Team (Community Outreach Addictions Team). This program employed individuals in recovery to help others transition into treatment. The COAT team concept was designated a “Promising Practice” from the National Association of County and Health Officials. When the COAT program was reviewed and evaluated, the percent of individuals seeking treatment after contact (56%) far surpassed the national average of treatment after contact (20%).

Judge Maciarello also attempted to increase academic performance and curb gang recruitment of youth in Doverdale Park with the start of an innovative after-school lacrosse program (Values Through Lacrosse/Doverdale Hawks). With funding from the County Executive’s Office and support from the Salisbury Police Department and local lacrosse programs, Maciarello teamed with Chief Barbara Duncan, County Executive Bob Culver and Mayor Jake Day to bring lacrosse to Doverdale Park. Maciarello continues to volunteer as a lacrosse coach, March through June, for this program, which aims to provide middle school aged children with lacrosse and leadership skills. Judge Maciarello and his sons Jonathan (17) and Luke (13) are regularly seen on the field working with the youth in the spring. Judge Maciarello has been the recipient of numerous awards for his public service including Rotarian of the Year and Elks Citizen of the Year. In addition, the Hawks Program received the “Wicomico County Community Impact Award.”

Judge Maciarello has been married nineteen (19) years and has two sons, Jonathan, an Eagle Scout candidate and lacrosse player for the Parkside Rams, and Luke, who plays football and lacrosse for the Fruitland Falcons. The family loves Wicomico County and the shore and is actively involved in making Wicomico a better place for all.

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Judges Beckstead and Maciarello Strive to Maintain the Dignity of Judicial Office

The Committee To Retain Wicomico's Judges takes seriously the standards set out by the Maryland Judicial Campaign Conduct Committee (MDJCCC). It is the Committee's wish that this campaign promotes civil conduct in judicial elections and upholds judicial impartiality. All information contained on this website is presented as accurately as possible in order to comply with MDJCCC standards and Maryland election laws.

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