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Obama nominates gay man to U.S. District Court
From a news release, posted July 20, 2011
2011-07-20

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WASHINGTON, DC — President Obama announced his nomination July 20 of Michael Walter Fitzgerald to the United States District Court for the Central District of California.

"I am honored to nominate Michael Walter Fitzgerald to the United States District Court," President Obama said. "His impressive career stands as a testament to his formidable intellect and integrity. I am confident he will serve the people of California with distinction on the District Court bench."

Michael Walter Fitzgerald: Nominee for United States District Judge for the Central District of California

Michael Walter Fitzgerald has been a named partner at the law firm of Corbin, Fitzgerald & Athey LLP in Los Angeles, California since 1998, where he handles civil and criminal litigation in both federal and state courts. Previously, he worked at the Law Offices of Robert L. Corbin PC from 1995 to 1998 and at the law firm of Heller, Ehrman, White & McAuliffe from 1991 to 1995. Between 1988 and 1991, Fitzgerald served as an Assistant United States Attorney in Los Angeles. Upon graduation from law school, he clerked for the Honorable Irving R. Kaufman of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. Fitzgerald received his J.D. in 1985 from the University of California, Berkeley School of Law ( Boalt Hall ) and his A.B. magna cum laude in 1981 from Harvard University.

Sen. Barbara Boxer's office issued this statement:

Washington, D.C. — U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer ( D-CA ) today praised President Obama's nomination of Los Angeles attorney Michael W. Fitzgerald for a federal judgeship on the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California. Senator Boxer recommended Fitzgerald's nomination to the White House after a thorough interview and vetting process by a bipartisan advisory committee.

Senator Boxer said, "I am pleased the President has nominated respected Los Angeles attorney Michael W. Fitzgerald to serve as a federal judge for the Central District of California. Michael's sharp intellect, record of public service and broad legal experience will be a real asset on the federal bench."

If confirmed by the Senate, Fitzgerald would make history by becoming the first openly gay federal judge confirmed to serve in California.

As an assistant United States Attorney for the Central District of California, Fitzgerald handled a wide range of criminal cases, including a drug and money laundering case involving what at that time was the second-largest cocaine seizure in California.

A distinguished attorney with a strong record of public service, Fitzgerald has served as Counsel to the Board of Police Commissioners, also known as the Webster Commission, and as Deputy General Counsel for the Rampart Independent Task Force.

Since 1995, Fitzgerald has been a partner at the Los Angeles law firm of Corbin, Fitzgerald & Athey LLP where he has maintained an active pro bono practice while working on complex commercial litigation, criminal defense, copyright and securities cases. Fitzgerald also serves on the Board of Directors of the Los Angeles Chapter of the Federal Bar Association.

Fitzgerald received his bachelor's degree from Harvard University and earned his law degree from UC Berkeley's Boalt Hall School of Law.

The Central District of California comprises the counties of San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, Ventura, Los Angeles, San Bernardino, Orange and Riverside. It is the most populous federal judicial district, with over 18 million residents spread across 40,000 square miles.

The White House � 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW � Washington DC 20500 � 202-456-1111


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