SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions has named a Justice Department lawyer to temporarily lead the U.S. attorney's office in the Central District of Illinois.

The appointment of John E. Childress of Springfield lasts for 120 days. He replaces Patrick Hansen, who served as acting U.S. attorney since the December 2016 retirement of Jim Lewis. Hansen will remain with the office as an assistant.

Childress is a native of Indianapolis and received his law degree from Duke University in 1990.

The temporary appointments of Hansen and Childress were prompted by President Donald Trump's failure to nominate someone for the position.

If a presidential nominee isn't presented within 120 days, Central District judges will be able to choose who temporarily fills the top federal prosecutor's office until a Trump nominee is confirmed by the U.S. Senate.