The U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia will be hit with a fourth vacancy at the end of the year.
On Monday, Judge Paul Friedman sent a letter to the White House informing the president that he would take senior status as of the on Dec. 31, 2009. The district court currently has 12 active judges.
A commission convened by District of Columbia Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton has already been evaluating potential nominees for the other three vacancies on Washington’s federal trial court. (Read the BLT’s coverage here and here.)
Federal judges are permitted to take senior status once they have turned 65 and served at least 15 years on the bench. Friedman, who was appointed in 1994 by President Bill Clinton, said that Sept. 21 was the 15th anniversary of his formal investiture and that “it seemed like a good day” to send the letter informing the president of his decision.
He said he did not anticipate slowing down his work pace. “I don’t believe it’s going to change my life a great deal,” Friedman said. “Certainly until we get new judges nominated and on board, I’m going to keep doing what I’ve been doing for 15 years.”