Durbin: Senate Approves Feinerman for Federal Judgeship in Northern District

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] – U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that the United States Senate has approved Gary Feinerman, by a vote of 80-0, to fill a vacancy on the U.S. District Court in the Northern District of Illinois.

“Gary Feinerman would be a fine federal judge,” said Durbin.  “His extensive experience and distinguished record will be an asset to the Northern District of Illinois.  It was an honor recommending his name to President Obama and voting on his nomination today.”

Feinerman has been a partner at Sidley Austin in Chicago since 2007.  From 2003-2007, he served as Illinois’s Solicitor General, and before that he was a partner at Mayer Brown in Chicago.  He has argued numerous cases before the U.S. Supreme Court, U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit, and Illinois Supreme Court.  He served as a judicial law clerk to U.S. Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy and to 7th Circuit Judge Joel Flaum in Chicago.  He has served on numerous boards and is the president of the Appellate Lawyers Association of Illinois.  He has also served as a Leadership Greater Chicago fellow, and he received a “Forty Under Forty” designation from Crain’s Chicago Business.  He graduated from Stanford Law School, finishing with the second highest grade point average in the class.

In April of last year, Durbin established three bipartisan screening committees to assist in selecting Federal District Court Judges, U.S. Attorneys, and U.S. Marshals for Illinois. The screening committees were comprised of 22 distinguished Illinoisans drawn from various aspects of the legal profession and include former judges, prominent litigators, law professors, bar association leaders, former prosecutors and defenders.  Former federal judge and Illinois Congressman Abner Mikva chaired the Northern District Screening Panel.

Members of the screening committees met throughout the spring and early summer, reviewing applications and references, and conducting interviews. The screening committees recommended the names of several individuals for each vacancy.  Durbin reviewed the screening committees’ recommendations, conducted interviews of finalists, and in consultation with members of the Illinois Congressional delegation, submitted the names of seven individuals to the President, who made the final decision on nominees.