Thursday, April 25, 2013
Ninth Circuit Judge M. Margaret McKeown Takes Helm of Federal Judges Association
By a MetNews Staff Writer
Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals Judge M. Margaret McKeown took office as president of the Federal Judges Association yesterday, the court said in a release.
M. MARGARET MCKEOWN
Court of Appeals Judge
The San Diego-based jurist took over from U.S. District Judge W. Royal Furgeson Jr. of Dallas, Texas. She has been a member of the FJA Board of Directors since 2007 and will serve a two-year term as president.
“FJA activities focus on obtaining adequate funding for the federal courts; advocating for judicial vacancies to be filled in a timely fashion by highly qualified nominees; educating the public about the importance of an independent judiciary; and preventing diminution of judicial pay as provided for in the Constitution,” the release said.
In a statement, McKeown acknowledged that she was taking office during “difficult times for the judiciary.” She said the association would enable judges to “speak with one voice” regarding budget cuts, confirmation delays, compensation-related attrition from the bench, “and other critically important issues.
The release noted the FJA’s work in warning Congress of potential cuts in judicial services as courtroom operations, public information services, representation by federal defenders and staffing of pretrial and probation services fall victim to sequestration and almost 10 percent of judicial positions remain vacant.
McKeown, an appointee of then-President Bill Clinton, has served on the Ninth Circuit since 1998. Prior to coming onto the federal bench, she had been in private practice with Perkins Coie in Seattle and Washington, D.C., and served as a White House Fellow.
A Wyoming native, McKeown graduated from the University of Wyoming in 1972, and from Georgetown University Law Center in 1975. Georgetown University gave her an honorary doctorate in 2005.
She recently chaired of the Codes of Conduct Committee of the U.S. Judicial Conference and currently chairs the American Bar Association’s Rule of Law Council on Latin America.
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