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Lisa Johnston, a career federal prosecutor, on Thursday was named Acting U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of West Virginia.

Johnston, who has been with the office since August 2006, will serve as Acting U.S. Attorney until President Joe Biden makes a nomination for the position and the U.S. Senate confirms the nominee, according to a news release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Johnston follows former U.S. Attorney Mike Stuart, who resigned Sunday night at Biden’s request. When a new president of a different political party takes office, it is common that U.S. Attorneys from the previous administration are asked to resign.

The Washington D.C.-based Executive Office for U.S. Attorney’s selected Johnston to fill the vacancy, according to the news release.

“I am truly humbled and honored to serve as the Acting U.S. Attorney in the Southern District of West Virginia,” Johnston said in the release. “The important work of the public servants in the U.S. Attorney’s Offices in the district and their dedication to justice will continue. We look forward to working with our dedicated law enforcement partners who work hard to ensure the safety of our communities.”

In 2010, Johnston was named the Project Safe Childhood Coordinator for the district.

“Throughout her lengthy career with the Department of Justice, Johnston prosecuted numerous sexual exploitation cases as well as federal cases involving firearms, arson, drugs and health care fraud,” the release reads.

In 2018, Johnston assumed the duties of First Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Southern District of West Virginia, providing guidance to the civil, criminal and administrative Divisions of the office, according to the release. Johnston has also worked previously as a Special Assistant U.S. Attorney, then later as an Assistant U.S. Attorney, in the Northern District of West Virginia from 1988 until 2006.

Reach Joe Severino at joe.severino@wvgazettemail.com, 304-348-4814 or follow @jj_severino on Twitter.

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