|Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit|
November 9, 1987 – September 4, 1998
|Appointed by||Ronald Reagan|
|Preceded by||James Hunter|
|Succeeded by||Julio Fuentes|
|Judge for the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey|
November 4, 1985 – November 16, 1987
|Appointed by||Ronald Reagan|
|Preceded by||Seat established|
|Succeeded by||Alfred Wolin|
|Born|| September 4, 1930
Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
|Alma mater||Drake University
Rutgers University, Newark
Robert E. Cowen (born September 4, 1930) is a Federal Appeals Judge with the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit based in Philadelphia. He joined the court in 1987 after being nominated by President Ronald Reagan. Cowen is a judge serving on senior status and has served in the federal judiciary since 1978.
Early life and education
A native of New Jersey, Cowen graduated from Drake University in 1952 with a B.S. degree. In 1958, Cowen graduated from Rutgers School of Law–Newark with a LL.B.. Cowen attended Columbia Law School before leaving to join the Army, where he earned the G.I. Bill, which he needed in order to pay for his education.
Cowen began his legal career as a law clerk for New Jersey Superior Court judge Walter Conklin in the New Jersey Superior Court from 1958 to 1959 before becoming a private practice attorney licensed in the State of New Jersey from 1959 to 1969. Cowen also served as an Assistant county prosecutor for the Essex County, NJ Prosecutor's Office from 1969 to 1970 before joining the New Jersey Attorney General's Office as a Deputy state attorney general from 1970 to 1973 before becoming the Director of Ethics and Professional Services in the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts for New Jersey from 1973 to 1978.
Federal Judicial Career
District of New Jersey
From 1978 to 1985, Cowen was a U.S. Magistrate in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey. Cowen was nominated by President Ronald Reagan on October 7, 1985 to a new seat created by 98 Stat. 333 which was approved by Congress. Cowen was confirmed by the United States Senate on November 1, 1985 on a Senate vote and received commission on November 4, 1985. Cowen left the District of New Jersey on November 16, 1987, due to his appointment to the Third Circuit Court of Appeals.
Third Circuit Court of Appeals
Less than two years later, Cowen was nominated by President Ronald Reagan on August 7, 1987, to a seat vacated by James Hunter III as Hunter assumed senior status. Cowen was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on November 6, 1987 on unanimous consent of the Senate and received commission on November 9, 1987. Cowen served 11 years before assuming senior status on September 4, 1998.
- Robert Cowen at the Biographical Directory of Federal Judges, a public domain publication of the Federal Judicial Center.
|New seat||Judge of the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey
|Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit