Glen E. Conrad

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Glen E. Conrad
Senior Judge of the United States District Court for the Western District of Virginia
In office
December 11, 2017 – May 20, 2021
Chief Judge of the United States District Court for the Western District of Virginia
In office
2010 – July 2, 2017
Preceded byJames Parker Jones
Succeeded byMichael F. Urbanski
Judge of the United States District Court for the Western District of Virginia
In office
September 24, 2003 – December 11, 2017
Appointed byGeorge W. Bush
Preceded byJames Clinton Turk
Succeeded byThomas T. Cullen
Personal details
Born
Glen Edward Conrad

(1949-06-29)June 29, 1949
Radford, Virginia
DiedMay 20, 2021(2021-05-20) (aged 71)
Alma materCollege of William & Mary (BA, JD)

Glen Edward Conrad (June 29, 1949 – May 20, 2021) was a United States District Judge of the United States District Court for the Western District of Virginia and a former federal judicial nominee to the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.

Background[edit]

Born and raised in Radford, Virginia, Conrad was the son of an elementary school teacher mother and a father who worked in the post office.[1] Conrad earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from the College of William & Mary in 1971, where he wrote his senior thesis on the Republican Party.[1] While writing that thesis, Conrad met James Clinton Turk, the federal district judge whom he eventually would succeed on the United States District Court for the Western District of Virginia. Conrad then earned a Juris Doctor from the College of William and Mary's Marshall-Wythe School of Law in 1974.[2] Conrad's first job was as an interpreter/host at Colonial Williamsburg in 1974. He then worked as a United States probation officer for the Western District of Virginia from 1975 until 1976. In 1976, Conrad became a United States Magistrate Judge of the United States District Court for the Western District of Virginia. He served in that capacity until 2003.[2] Conrad applied for a federal judgeship in 1990.[1]

Federal judicial service[edit]

On April 28, 2003, President George W. Bush nominated Conrad to become a United States District Judge of the United States District Court for the Western District of Virginia.[3] "I felt like I had done just about all I could do with the responsibilities I had," Conrad told the Roanoke Times.[1] The United States Senate confirmed Conrad in an 89-0 vote on September 22, 2003.[2] Conrad received his commission on September 24, 2003. He served as Chief Judge from 2010-2017. He assumed senior status on December 11, 2017.

Fourth Circuit nomination under Bush[edit]

On May 8, 2008, President George W. Bush nominated Conrad to the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, to fill the seat of H. Emory Widener, Jr., who had taken senior status in July 2007 (Widener died in September 2007).[4] Bush had previously nominated William J. Haynes, II and E. Duncan Getchell, but both nominations failed after opposition from Democrats and some Republicans. Conrad's nomination to the Fourth Circuit expired upon the end of President Bush's presidency in January 2009.

Notable cases[edit]

In February 2017, Conrad found that the Eighth Amendment to the United States Constitution did not prevent Virginia from criminally prohibiting those it identified as "habitual drunkards" from possessing alcohol.[5][6] His judgment was ultimately reversed by the Fourth Circuit sitting en banc.[7]

In August 2017, Conrad was involved in a case related to the far-right Unite the Right rally. The city of Charlottesville had attempted to prevent the organizers from holding the rally in Emancipation Park, and instead move them to McIntire Park based on their opinion that the larger space would allow for better separation of the two groups while still allowing for the rally to be held. Conrad granted an injunction due to several factors; Emancipation Park was the location for the statue of Robert Lee that was planned to be taken down, that resources would be needed at both parks for both the rally and the counterprotestors, and that the move to McIntire Park was due to the viewpoints of the organizer and not the safety of the public.[8][9]

Personal[edit]

Conrad's wife, Mary Ann, is active in the Republican Party.[1] Conrad died on May 20, 2021, aged 71.[10][11]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e The Roanoke Times (October 20, 2003).
  2. ^ a b c "Conrad, Glen Edward - Federal Judicial Center". www.fjc.gov.
  3. ^ "Pres. Nom. 537". 108th Congress (2003).
  4. ^ "Pres. Nom. 1660". 110th Congress (2008).
  5. ^ Hendrick v. Caldwell, 232 F. Supp. 3d 868 (W.D. Va. 2017).
  6. ^ Note, Recent Case: Fourth Circuit Declines to Apply Justice White’s Concurrence in Powell v. Texas as Binding Precedent, 132 Harv. L. Rev. 1089 (2019).
  7. ^ Weiss, Debra Cassens (17 July 2019). "Habitual drunkard law is struck down by full appeals court in closely divided opinion". ABA Journal. Retrieved 20 March 2020.
  8. ^ Judge allows Unite the Right rally to stay in Emancipation Park - The Daily Progress
  9. ^ Kessler v City of Charlottesville, Virginia, et al., ___ F. Supp. 3d ___, (W.D. Va. 2017)
  10. ^ Dickens, Tad (May 21, 2021). "Glen Conrad, longtime federal judge, dies". Roanoke Times. Retrieved May 22, 2021.
  11. ^ "Statement of the United States District Court for the Western District of Virginia on the passing of Senior United States District Judge Glen E. Conrad" (PDF). United States District Court for the Western District of Virginia. May 21, 2021. Retrieved May 22, 2021.

Sources[edit]

Legal offices
Preceded by
James Clinton Turk
Judge of the United States District Court for the Western District of Virginia
2003–2017
Succeeded by
Thomas T. Cullen
Preceded by
James Parker Jones
Chief Judge of the United States District Court for the Western District of Virginia
2010–2017
Succeeded by
Michael F. Urbanski