Victoria Nourse, a nominee for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit, would likely leap into the ranks of the wealthiest federal judges if she is confirmed.
Nourse reported a household net worth of $19.8 million in a financial disclosure required as part of the Senate confirmation process. That’s exceptionally high for a federal judicial nominee, even compared to those who come from private practice. Nourse has been a law professor at the University of Wisconsin in Madison since 1993.
The disclosure report doesn’t ask nominees where their wealth comes from, but Nourse’s husband, Richard Cudahy Jr., is descended from the founder of meat processor Patrick Cudahy Inc. He works at the investment firm Robert W. Baird & Co.
Most of the couple’s investments are held in seven separate family trusts, according to the disclosure report. The investments include a wide variety of stock in publicly traded companies, mutual fund shares and bonds. Their largest single investment, valued at $1.3 million, is in a fund run by GMO LLC., a mutual fund company with offices in Boston and San Francisco.
In 2009, Nourse made $198,291 as a law professor, spending the year as a visiting professor at Emory University. She also made $809 in book royalties.
Nourse is President Barack Obama’s most recent nominee to the federal courts of appeals, named on July 14. She has taught classes on legislation, constitutional law and criminal law, and prior to entering academia, she was an appellate lawyer at the U.S. Department of Justice and a counsel to the Senate Judiciary Committee. Among the issues she worked on under then-Sen. Joe Biden (D-Del.) was legislation about domestic violence.
A date for her confirmation hearing has not been set.