Ann Aiken

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Ann Aiken
Ann Aiken 13.JPG
Chief Judge for the United States District Court for the District of Oregon
Assumed office
February 1, 2009
Preceded by Ancer L. Haggerty
Judge for the United States District Court for the District of Oregon
Assumed office
February 4, 1998
Nominated by President Clinton
Preceded by James A. Redden
Personal details
Born (1951-12-29) December 29, 1951 (age 63)
Salem, Oregon, U.S.
Alma mater University of Oregon
Rutgers University
University of Oregon School of Law.

Ann Louise Aiken (born December 29, 1951) is an American attorney and jurist in the state of Oregon. A native Oregonian, she has served as a state court judge of the Oregon circuit courts and worked in private legal practice. She is currently a United States District Court judge for the District of Oregon, and has been the chief judge of the court since February 1, 2009.

Early years[edit]

Aiken was born in Salem, Oregon, on December 29, 1951.[1] In 1974, she graduated from the University of Oregon in Eugene with a Bachelor of Science degree, and then from Rutgers University in New Jersey in 1976 with a master's degree.[1] Aiken returned to Oregon and graduated with a Juris Doctor degree in 1979 from the University of Oregon School of Law. After law school, she worked as a law clerk for judge Edwin Allen of the Lane County Circuit Court from 1979 to 1980.[1]

She entered private legal practice in 1980 and remained there until 1982.[1] In 1982, Aiken worked as a fundraiser and field staffer for Ted Kulongoski's unsuccessful campaign for Governor of Oregon in 1982, and then worked as the chief clerk of the Oregon House of Representatives from 1982 to 1983.[1] Aiken returned to private practice that year and remained there until she became a district judge in Lane County in 1988.[1] Based in Eugene, she then became an Oregon circuit court judge in 1992 for Lane County, remaining on the bench until 1997.[1]

Federal judge[edit]

President Bill Clinton nominated her to a seat on the United States District Court for the District of Oregon vacated by James A. Redden in November 1995, and again on January 7, 1997.[1] Aiken was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on January 28, 1998, receiving her commission on February 4, 1998.[1] On February 1, 2009, she became chief judge of the court, the first woman to hold that position on the Oregon court.[2]


On September 26, 2007, Judge Aiken declared unconstitutional two portions of the USA PATRIOT Act that deal with the government's power to conduct certain surveillance without first obtaining a warrant. The decision received national attention and came in the case of the Brandon Mayfield lawsuit against the federal government for false detainment following the 2004 Madrid train bombings, in which Mayfield was uninvolved in the bombings.[3] In the decision, Aiken held that those provisions of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act violate the Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution.[4]


In 1978, Aiken married James Klonoski, a political science professor at the University of Oregon and one-time chair of the Democratic Party of Oregon. Klonoski died in January 2009.[5] They had a number of children together; one of them, Nick Klonoski, committed suicide using a suicide kit in 2011.[6]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i Judges of the United States: Ann L. Aiken. Federal Judicial Center. Retrieved on November 21, 2008.
  2. ^ "Courthouse News" (PDF). Vol. XV, No. 1. United States District Court for the District of Oregon. January 20, 2009. p. 2. Retrieved 2009-03-10. 
  3. ^ Federal judge rules 2 Patriot Act provisions unconstitutional. CNN, accessed September 27, 2007.
  4. ^ Mayfield v. United States. Accessed September 27, 2007.
  5. ^
  6. ^ "Suicide kits rekindle debate on assisted suicide". Fox News. May 26, 2011. 
Legal offices
Preceded by
Ancer L. Haggerty
Chief Judge of the United States District Court for the District of Oregon
Preceded by
James A. Redden
Judge of the United States District Court for the District of Oregon