Last week, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe elected a new judge in the Court in respect of France: Mr André Potocki. Potocki received 110 out of 160 votes cast. He will succeed judge Costa, the current judge elected in respect of France, on 4 November 2011. Potocki has been elected for a term of nine years. Who will succeed Costa as president of the Court is, to my knowledge, not yet known.
Potocki, born in 1950, is currently a judge at the French Court of Cassation (in the commercial section!). He was also, shortly, a judge at the Court of First Instance of the European Communities. The expertise gained in the latter function may be very useful in the context of the pending accession of the European Union to the ECHR. His particular expertise in human rights is fairly limited. The CV only indicates that he was a member of the French committee re-examining a criminal decision further to a judgment of the European Court of Human Rights. For his full CV, see here.
The three French candidates were selected by a national committee following an open call for applications - a method which an increassing number of ECHR state parties have opted for in the past few years.