HNBA, ACS, and other National Organizations to Co-Host Briefing on Obstacles to Diversity on Federal Courts

In Wake of Liu Filibuster, HNBA, ACS, and other National Organizations to Co-Host Briefing
on Obstacles to Diversity on Federal Courts

Coalition of Groups to Release Guide to Becoming a Judge

For Immediate Release: May 31, 2011
Contact: Zuraya Tapia
202-223-4777
ztapia@hnba.com

Washington, D.C. – The move by Senate Republicans to filibuster long-delayed judicial nominee Goodwin Liu not only perpetuated a vacancy crisis on our federal courts; it was also a major blow to diversity in the judiciary. Liu, a UC Berkeley law professor and leading constitutional scholar, would have been the only Asian Pacific American on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and one of just a few on the federal bench nationwide. Similar obstruction has blocked other long-pending nominees who would contribute significant diversity to our nation’s federal courts if confirmed, including Arvo Mikkaken, who would be the only Native American on the federal bench, and Edward Dumont, who would be the first gay male federal appeals court judge.

Today, May 31, the Hispanic National Bar Association (HNBA) will co-host a press briefing and panel on diversity on our courts, in advance of a reception to launch a new how-to guide on pursuing federal judgeships, “The Path to the Federal Bench.”  The Honorable Albert Diaz, Judge, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, will be part of a discussion after the presser.

The event is co-sponsored by the coalition of groups that developed the publication: ACS, the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association, The National Bar Association, the National Congress of American Indians, the National Association of Women Judges, the National LGBT Bar Association and Justice at Stake.

WHO:

  • Moderator, Caroline Fredrickson, Executive Director, American Constitution Society
  • John E. Echohawk, Executive Director, Native American Rights Fund
  • D’Arcy Kemnitz, Executive Director, National LGBT Bar Association
  • Tina Matsuoka, Executive Director, National Asian Pacific American Bar Association

Zuraya Tapia-Hadley, HNBA Executive Director, and Bert Brandenburg will then introduce signature speakers during a reception to celebrate the launch of “The Path to the Federal Bench” to follow on the Capitol Terrace, featuring:

  • Theodore A. McKee, Chief Judge, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
  • Albert Diaz, Judge, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit

WHEN: May 31, 2011. The briefing will begin at 5:30 p.m., with a reception to follow at 6 p.m. and a brief program at 6:30 p.m.

WHERE: Jones Day, Ellis McKay Room (room 206), 51 Louisiana Avenue, NW, Washington, D.C. 20001.

RSVP: Please RSVP to press@acslaw.org.

The American Constitution Society for Law and Policy (ACS), founded in 2001 and one of the nation’s leading progressive legal organizations, is a rapidly growing network of lawyers, law students, scholars, judges, policymakers and other concerned individuals. For more information about the organization or to locate one of the more than 200 lawyer and law student chapters in 48 states, please visit www.acslaw.org.

Click here to view the pamphlet.