Federal Firsts
California Lawyer

Federal Firsts

Obama's California Appointments

August 2012

First female Asian/Pacific-American circuit judge in the nation


A double Obama nominee and a superior court judge before that, Nguyen was confirmed May 7 to the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Two and a half years earlier she was confirmed as a federal judge for the Central District of California, becoming the first Vietnamese district judge in the nation.

First female Chinese-American federal judge in the U.S.


Previously a labor lawyer with Schwartz, Steinsapir, Dohrmann & Sommers in Los Angeles, Gee was confirmed December 24, 2009, to the Central District of California.

First Korean-American district judge nationwide and first female Korean-American federal judge


Koh was confirmed June 7, 2010, to the Northern District of California. She is also the district's first Asian/Pacific-American judge.

First openly gay federal judge in California


The former federal prosecutor and former name partner at the Los Angeles boutique firm of Corbin, Fitzgerald, Athey & Martinez was confirmed March 15 to the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.


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