The following is a statement from LDF’s President and Director-Counsel, Sherrilyn Ifill:
The NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc., is thrilled by today’s Senate’s vote to confirm Cornelia “Nina” Pillard to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. Nina is a tremendously talented lawyer, who has dedicated her career to public service and legal education. There is no question she will be an outstanding circuit court judge.
Nina began her career as a litigator with LDF before going on to distinguished service as an appellate lawyer with the Department of Justice and a professor at Georgetown Law School. Nina clerked for the late U.S. District Court Judge Louis H. Pollak, a former LDF Board member who served on the Brown v. Board of Education legal team.
With the confirmation of Patricia Millet to the same court yesterday, Nina will be the seventh woman in 120 years to serve on the D.C. Circuit. We also note that the last judge on the D.C. Circuit with ties to LDF was Spottswood Robinson, III, who worked on the Brown litigation and was appointed to the court by Lyndon Johnson in 1966.
LDF continues to press the Obama Administration to nominate candidates who will bring racial, gender, and professional diversity to our federal judiciary. Today’s news represents a welcome development for this circuit court, which has a unique and extremely important role in our justice system.