Friday, May 27, 2022

Jackson's first Supreme Court clerks include judiciary workplace reform advocate. (Reuters)

Good choice of her first law clerks by Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson, our newest Supreme Court Justice. 

From Reuters:

Jackson's first Supreme Court clerks include judiciary workplace reform advocate

Senate Judiciary Committee holds a business meeting to vote on the nomination of Ketanji Brown Jackson to be an Associate Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court.

U.S. Supreme Court nominee and federal appeals court Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson smiles during a meeting with U.S. Senator Mark Warner (D-VA) on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., April 4, 2022. REUTERS/Michael A. McCoy

(Reuters) - U.S. Supreme Court Justice-designate Ketanji Brown Jackson has selected a diverse set of lawyers to serve as her first four law clerks, including one who has advocated for the judiciary to do more to prevent sexual harassment.

Jackson has picked two women and two men to serve as clerks after she joins the high court as its first Black female justice following Justice Stephen Breyer's retirement at the end of this term.

The hires were first reported Tuesday by the legal journalist David Lat and confirmed by a spokesperson for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, where Jackson is currently a judge.

The hires include Claire Madill, who has been working in Florida as a public defender, a role Jackson once served in, and who co-founded Law Clerks for Workplace Accountability, a group of current and former law clerks that argued for the judiciary to make changes to prevent workplace misconduct.

In an email, the University of Michigan Law School graduate said she was "incredibly honored and privileged to have been given this opportunity."

Two other hires clerked for Jackson previously: Kerrel Murray, in district court, and Natalie Salmanowitz, in the D.C. Circuit.

Murray is a Stanford Law School graduate and an associate professor at Columbia Law School who writes on constitutional law, election law and race and the law. Salmanowitz, a Harvard Law School graduate, is a law clerk at Hogan Lovells.

Jackson also is hiring Michael Qian, a Stanford law graduate and associate at Morrison & Foerster who earlier clerked for Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who died in 2020.

Jackson's hiring of Madill comes amid calls by reform advocates and lawmakers for greater legal protections for the judiciary's employees against harassment and discrimination.

Madill in a December 2017 column in Slate argued the Supreme Court "bears some of the blame" for the alleged behavior of Alex Kozinski, who resigned later that month from the 9th Circuit during an inquiry into harassment accusations by former female clerks.

Kozinski said he was retiring immediately from the lifetime appointment to avoid being a distraction for the federal judiciary.

In her column, Madill wrote "if the Supreme Court had stopped hiring Judge Kozinski’s clerks a long time ago, it would have sent a message that the Supreme Court would not tolerate sexual harassment in the judiciary." 

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