William Joseph Bauer
|Chief Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit|
September 1986 – July 31, 1993
|Preceded by||Walter Cummings|
|Succeeded by||Richard Posner|
|Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit|
December 20, 1974 – October 31, 1994
|Appointed by||Gerald Ford|
|Preceded by||Otto Kerner|
|Succeeded by||Diane Wood|
|Judge of the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois|
September 14, 1971 – December 20, 1974
|Appointed by||Richard Nixon|
|Preceded by||Joseph Perry|
|Succeeded by||Alfred Kirkland|
|Born|| September 15, 1926
Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
|Alma mater||Elmhurst College
William J. Bauer (born September 15, 1926) is a Judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit in Chicago.
Judge Bauer was born in Chicago, Illinois before moving with his family to Elmhurst. After serving in the U.S. Army (1945–1947), he received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Elmhurst College (1949), and a J.D. degree from DePaul University College of Law (1952).
Early in his career, he served as an Assistant State's Attorney in DuPage County, Illinois, eventually becoming First Assistant State's Attorney, and then State's Attorney in 1959. He began his judicial career in 1964, on the Circuit Court for the 18th Judicial Circuit in DuPage County, from 1964 to 1970.
After serving for a year as the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois, he was nominated by President Richard Nixon on 14 September 1971 to a seat on the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois which was being vacated by Joseph Samuel Perry. Bauer was confirmed by the United States Senate on 8 November 1971, and received his commission two days later.
On 11 December 1974, Gerald Ford nominated Bauer to a seat on the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit vacated by Otto Kerner, Jr.. Bauer was confirmed by the Senate on 19 December 1974, receiving his commission the following day. He served as chief judge from 1986 to 1993, and assumed senior status on 31 October 1994.
Bauer married Mary Nicol (Mike to all who knew her) in 1950, and they had two daughters, Pat and Linda, and granddaughter Sidonie.
Bauer is noted for his colorful language when writing court opinions. For example, in Sea-Land Services, Inc. v Pepper Source, Judge Bauer starts the opinion with: "This spicy case finds its origin in several shipments of Jamaican sweet peppers." 941 F.2d 519 (7th Cir. 1991). In United States v. Fluker, the case begins, "This case proves the old adage, 'If something sounds too good to be true, it probably is.'" 698 F.3d 988 (7th Cir. 2012). And in a recent concurrence in the case Jackson v. Pollion, No. 12-2682, which involved the application of medical knowledge to the legal community, he wrote, “As Judge Posner points out, many lawyers decided against medical school because of lack of interest in the clinical aspects of medicine or a deeper interest in the less scientific aspects of law. I was one of those who chose law as opposed to medicine.”
- William Joseph Bauer at the Biographical Directory of Federal Judges, a public domain publication of the Federal Judicial Center.
- DCBA Brief Online
|Judge of the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
|Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
|Chief Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit