Fern M. Smith

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Fern E. Meyerson Smith (born November 7, 1933) is a former United States federal judge.

Born in San Francisco, California, Smith received an A.A. from Foothill Community College in 1970, a B.A. from Stanford University in 1972, and a J.D. from Stanford Law School in 1975. She was in private practice in San Francisco, California from 1975 to 1986. She was a judge on the Superior Court of the State of California, County of San Francisco from 1986 to 1988. She was a Director, Federal Judicial Center from 1999 to 2003.

Smith was a federal judge on the United States District Court for the Northern District of California. Smith was nominated by President Ronald Reagan on May 9, 1988, to a seat vacated by Samuel Conti. She was confirmed by the United States Senate on July 26, 1988, and received her commission on July 27, 1988. She assumed senior status on May 15, 2003. Smith served in that capacity until June 30, 2005, due to retirement.

Smith has two daughters, Susan and Julie, and three grandchildren, Caroline, Sam, and Julia.


Legal offices
Preceded by
Samuel Conti
Judge of the United States District Court for the Northern District of California
Succeeded by
seat abolished