Diana Gribbon Motz
|Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit|
June 16, 1994
|Appointed by||Bill Clinton|
|Preceded by||Seat established|
July 15, 1943 |
Washington, D.C., U.S.
|Alma mater||Vassar College
University of Virginia
Diana Jane Gribbon Motz (born July 15, 1943) is a federal judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.
Early life and education
Born in Washington, D.C., Motz was reared in a legal family. Her father was the renowned litigator Daniel M. Gribbon. She earned a bachelor's degree from Vassar College in 1965 and a law degree from the University of Virginia School of Law in 1968. She was one of only two women in her law school class, she told the Baltimore Sun in an article that ran on July 22, 1994.
Motz worked in private law practice in Baltimore for the firm Piper & Marbury (now DLA Piper) from 1968 until 1971. She became the assistant state attorney general for the state of Maryland in 1972, and served in that capacity until 1986, when she returned to private practice. In 1991, Motz returned to the public sector, becoming an associate judge for the Court of Special Appeals of Maryland. She worked in that court until her confirmation as a federal appeals court judge in 1994.
While assistant state attorney general for Maryland, Motz famously won a $268,482 judgment against former Vice President Spiro Agnew to recover money he accepted as bribes while he was Maryland's governor.
Federal judicial service
On January 27, 1994, President Clinton nominated Motz to a newly created seat on the Fourth Circuit. She was unanimously confirmed by the U.S. Senate in a voice vote on June 15, 1994, becoming the first woman from Maryland ever to sit on the Fourth Circuit. Motz's husband, J. Frederick Motz, had been appointed a federal district court judge by President Ronald Reagan in 1985, making the Motzes the first married couple to sit on the federal bench. "Yes, it's true: He's a Republican. It's his only flaw," Motz quipped to the Los Angeles Times in an article that appeared on November 16, 1994.
- THE JUDICIARY Clinton's Big Bench: Judges of All Stripes and Colors Appointed Blacks, Latinos, women, even Republicans fill federal vacancies. It is the most diverse group named by any President.
- Diana Gribbon Motz at the Biographical Directory of Federal Judges, a public domain publication of the Federal Judicial Center.
|New seat||Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit