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Sat Jan 12, 2019, 01:20 PM

Patricia Wald, pathbreaking federal judge who became chief of D.C. Circuit, dies at 90

Source: The Washington Post



By Adam Bernstein January 12 at 12:10 PM

Shortly before she graduated from Yale Law School in 1951, Patricia Wald secured a job interview with a white-collar Manhattan firm. The hiring partner was impressed with her credentials — she was one of two women on the law review — but lamented her timing.

“It’s really a shame,” she recalled the man saying. “If only you could have been here last week.” A woman had been hired then, she was told, and it would be a long time before the firm considered bringing another on board.

Gradually, working nights and weekends while raising five children, she built a career in Washington as an authority on bail reform and family law. Working for a pro bono legal services group and an early public-interest law firm, she won cases that broadened protections for society’s most vulnerable, including indigent women and children with special needs.

She became an assistant attorney general under President Jimmy Carter, who in 1979 appointed her to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit — often described as the country’s most important bench after the U.S. Supreme Court. She was the first woman to serve on the D.C. Circuit court and was its chief judge from 1986 to 1991. Later, she was a member of the United Nations tribunal on war crimes and genocide in the former Yugoslavia.

Read more: https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/obituaries/patricia-wald-pathbreaking-federal-judge-who-became-chief-of-dc-circuit-dies-at-90/2019/01/12/6ab03904-1688-11e9-803c-4ef28312c8b9_story.html

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Reply Patricia Wald, pathbreaking federal judge who became chief of D.C. Circuit, dies at 90 (Original post)
DonViejo Jan 12 OP
BumRushDaShow Jan 12 #1
riversedge Jan 12 #2
akraven Jan 12 #3
Igel Jan 12 #4
getagrip_already Jan 12 #5

Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Sat Jan 12, 2019, 02:26 PM

1. I actually just got done reading this article and popped in to see if it was posted

What a remarkable career she had and a powerful influence on jurisprudence. I think the one thing that instantly impacted me was the last paragraph of the article -

“You always have a sad feeling when you write a dissent because it means you lost,” Judge Wald said in an interview with a D.C. Bar publication. “But you write them because you have faith that maybe they will play out at some time in the future, and because of the integrity you owe to yourself. There are times when you need to stand up and say, ‘I can’t be associated with this point of view.’ That was certainly the way I felt in the gay midshipman case.”

https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/obituaries/patricia-wald-pathbreaking-federal-judge-who-became-chief-of-dc-circuit-dies-at-90/2019/01/12/6ab03904-1688-11e9-803c-4ef28312c8b9_story.html


Her take on basically making sure to spend the time to write a worthy dissent to a majority opinion for history's sake, really underscores how to handle the ebb and flow of these dark times that we have descended into - notably at the SCOTUS level.

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Sat Jan 12, 2019, 02:28 PM

2. RIP good lady

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Sat Jan 12, 2019, 04:21 PM

3. What an amazing woman she was.

She will be missed.

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Sat Jan 12, 2019, 05:04 PM

4. Today what would stand out for some

is that she was appointed to an important court of appeals judgeship with no prior experience as a judge.

And that would be the official grounds for putting a hold on her nomination or saying nobody should vote for inexperience in such an important post.

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Response to Igel (Reply #4)

Sat Jan 12, 2019, 09:20 PM

5. only if she were unqualified to be a judge....

There is a huge difference between being an experienced federal attorney and having absolutely no credentials to practice law, let alone sit on a federal bench.

Patricia Wald was eminently qualified to become a judge, based on her experience and qualifications. That stands in stark contrast to trump appointees who hold virtually no qualifications for the posts they are appointed to.

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