Dora Lizette Irizarry
|Chief Judge of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York|
|Assumed office |
April 3, 2016
|Preceded by||Carol Bagley Amon|
|Judge of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York|
|Assumed office |
July 8, 2004
|Appointed by||George W. Bush|
|Preceded by||Reena Raggi|
|Born||January 26, 1955|
San Sebastian, Puerto Rico
|Education||Yale University (B.A.)|
Columbia Law School (J.D.)
Dora Lizette Irizarry (born January 26, 1955) is the Chief United States District Judge of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York.
Early life and education
Irizarry was born in San Sebastian, Puerto Rico, and was raised in the Bronx in New York City. She attended the Bronx High School of Science and went on to graduate from Yale University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1976 and Columbia Law School with a Juris Doctor in 1979. After law school, she worked as an assistant district attorney in the Bronx and Manhattan from 1979 to 1981. Irizarry said she wanted to improve the quality of life in the neighborhoods she grew up in, and specialized in drug and narcotics cases.
New York state court judge
She was appointed a New York City Criminal Court judge by former Mayor Rudolph Giuliani and then a judge of the New York Court of Claims by Governor George Pataki. As a Court of Claims judge, she served as an Acting Justice of the New York State Supreme Court, sitting in Brooklyn and Manhattan. She was the first Hispanic woman to serve as a state judge in New York.
She was an assistant district attorney of the Office of the Special Narcotics Prosecutor in the Bronx County District Attorney's Office from 1981 to 1987 and then in the New York County District Attorney's Office from 1987 to 1995. She then became a judge on the New York City Criminal Court from 1995 to 1997, and an Acting Justice on the Court of Claims in Kings County from 1997 to 1998, before serving in the same position in Manhattan from 1998 to 2002.
2002 New York Attorney General Election
In 2002, Irizarry resigned from her judgeship to become the Republican nominee for Attorney General of New York, challenging Democratic incumbent Eliot Spitzer. She was the first Latina to seek statewide office in New York State. Irizarry lost the race by a 66%-30% margin, but ran a strong race in upstate New York. After the election, she entered private practice with the firm of Hoguet, Newman & Regal in Manhattan.
Federal judicial service
In 2003, Irizarry was nominated by President George W. Bush to serve as a United States District Judge of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York. Although the American Bar Association determined her to be "not qualified," she was confirmed by the Senate on June 24, 2004 and received her commission on July 8, 2004, thereby becoming the first Hispanic judge in the Eastern District. She became Chief Judge of the Eastern District on April 15, 2016. Her judicial seat is in Brooklyn.
On December 15, 2010, Judge Irizarry sentenced Islamist militant and engineer Abdul Kadir, 58, of Guyana, to life in prison after the jury found him and co-defendant Russel Defreitas, a U.S. citizen born in Guyana, guilty of planning to blow up New York City's John F. Kennedy International Airport by exploding fuel tanks and pipelines underneath it. She sentenced Defreitas to life in prison on February 17, 2011. One month previously, she had sentenced Abdel Nur, a co-defendant who pleaded guilty, to 15 years, and the following year, Kareem Ibrahim, who was tried separately, was also found guilty and sentenced by Judge Irizarry to life.
- A Conversation with the Honorable Dora L. Irizarry, District Judge Archived March 14, 2012, at the Wayback Machine Accessed 2009-06-29
- "Statements of Thomas Z. Hayward, Jr. and Patricia M. Hynes on Behalf of the Standing Committee on Federal Judiciary of the American Bar Association Concerning the Nomination of Dora L. Irizarry to be Judge of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York Before the Committee of the Judiciary United States Senate" (PDF). americanbar.org. American Bar Association. October 1, 2003. Retrieved 12 September 2016.
- Abruzzese, Rob (April 19, 2016). "Hon. Dora Irizarry takes over as Chief Judge in Brooklyn Federal Court". Brooklyn Daily Eagle. Retrieved 12 September 2016.
- "Russell Defreitas Sentenced to Life in Prison for Conspiring to Commit Terrorist Attack at JFK Airport - Defreitas and Co-conspirators Plotted to Explode Fuel Tanks at Airport". fbi.gov. FBI - New York Field Office. Retrieved 12 September 2016.
- "Abdel Nur Sentenced to 15 Years in Prison for Providing Material Support to the Conspiracy to Commit a Terrorist Attack at JFK Airport - Nur Provided Material Support by Introducing Plotters to Violent Islamic Radical". fbi.gov. FBI - New York Field Office. Retrieved 12 September 2016.
- "Kareem Ibrahim Sentenced to Life in Prison for Conspiring to Commit Terrorist Attack at JFK Airport - Ibrahim and Co-Conspirators Plotted to Explode Fuel Tanks and Pipeline at Airport". fbi.gov. FBI - New York Field Office. Retrieved 12 September 2016.
- Dora Irizarry at the Biographical Directory of Federal Judges, a public domain publication of the Federal Judicial Center.
| Republican Nominee for New York State Attorney General
| Judge of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York
Carol Bagley Amon
| Chief Judge of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York|