President Donald Trump has nominated prominent Indian-American attorney Shireen Mathews as a judge of the US District Court for the Southern District of California.
If confirmed, Matthews will be the first Asian Pacific American woman and first Indian-American to serve as an Article III federal judge in the Southern District, National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) said.
Article III judges “hold their office during good behavior”, which means they have a lifetime appointment, except under very limited circumstances. Article III judges can be removed from office only through impeachment by the House of Representatives and conviction by the Senate.
Currently, Matthews is a partner at Jones Day, the fifth-largest law firm in the country, in San Diego.
Prior to joining the firm, Matthews served as an Assistant United States Attorney in the Criminal Division of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of California. Before entering government service, Matthews was an associate with Latham and Watkins LLP in San Diego, the White House said in a statement.
NAPABA has applauded Trump’s intent to nominate Matthews.
“Shireen Matthews is [an] experienced attorney, both in the public and private sectors. She will be a well-qualified addition to the bench in the Southern District of California,” NAPABA President Daniel Sakaguchi said in the release.
Sakaguchi said that the potential nominee is dedicated to “serving her community and promoting diversity in the legal profession” and has served as a former president of the San Diego’s chapter of the South Asian Bar Association.
Matthews earned her BA, magna cum laude, from Georgetown University and her law degree, cum laude, from Duke University School of Law.