Out Judge Alison Nathan Confirmed To 2nd Circuit Court Of Appeals

Judge Alison Nathan has been elevated to the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals becoming the second openly LGBTQ+ woman to serve on a federal appeals court.
Judge Alison Nathan (image: WikiMedia Commons/57nineteen)

The U.S. Senate approved the nomination of Judge Alison Nathan to the New York-based 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals by a vote of 49-47 on Wednesday evening.

Nathan becomes only the second out LGBTQ+ woman to serve on a federal appeals court.

Three Senate Republicans  – Susan Collins of Maine, Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, and John Kennedy of Louisiana –  voted with Senate Democrats in favor of her appointment. Four senators did not vote.

The Advocate reports that Nathan is the 4th judge nominated by President Biden to win confirmation to the 2nd Circuit. Last year, Beth Robinson became the first LGBTQ+ woman to serve on the federal appeals court when she was confirmed.

The circuit hears appeals of cases from federal courts in New York, Connecticut, and Vermont.

In 2018, the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 bans anti-gay discrimination.

An experienced litigator and accomplished jurist, Judge Nathan has served on the U.S. District Court for the SDNY since 2012, presiding over 45 trials, authoring over 1500 opinions.

During her confirmation hearings in December, Nathan pointed to the late U.S. Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens, who she once clerked for, as the legal figure she tries to emulate in her work.