United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

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United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
(2d Cir.)
Seal of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.svg
2nd Circuit map.svg
LocationThurgood Marshall U.S. Courthouse
Appeals from
EstablishedJune 16, 1891
Circuit JusticeSonia Sotomayor
Chief JudgeDebra Ann Livingston

The United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit (in case citations, 2d Cir.) is one of the thirteen United States Courts of Appeals. Its territory comprises the states of Connecticut, New York and Vermont. The court has appellate jurisdiction over the district courts in the following districts:

The Second Circuit has its clerk's office and hears oral arguments at the Thurgood Marshall United States Courthouse at 40 Foley Square in Lower Manhattan. Due to renovations at that building, from 2006 until early 2013, the court temporarily relocated to the Daniel Patrick Moynihan United States Courthouse across Pearl Street from Foley Square; certain court offices temporarily relocated to the Woolworth Building at 233 Broadway.[1]

Because the Second Circuit includes New York City, it has long been one of the largest and most influential American appellate courts, especially in matters of contract law, securities law and antitrust law. Over the course of the twentieth century, it came to be considered one of the two most prestigious federal appellate courts, along with the District of Columbia Circuit Court.[2] Several notable judges have served on the Second Circuit, including three later named Associate Justices of the United States Supreme Court: John Marshall Harlan II, Thurgood Marshall, and Sonia Sotomayor. Judge Learned Hand served on the court from 1924 to 1961, as did his cousin, Augustus Noble Hand, from 1927 until 1953. Judge Henry Friendly served from 1959 to 1986.

Current composition of the court[edit]

As of November 12, 2021:

# Title Judge Duty station Born Term of service Appointed by
Active Chief Senior
64 Chief Judge Debra Ann Livingston New York, NY 1959 2007–present 2020–present G.W. Bush
53 Circuit Judge José A. Cabranes New Haven, CT 1940 1994–present Clinton
55 Circuit Judge Rosemary S. Pooler Syracuse, NY 1938 1998–present Clinton
67 Circuit Judge Raymond Lohier New York, NY 1965 2010–present Obama
68 Circuit Judge Susan L. Carney New Haven, CT 1951 2011–present Obama
70 Circuit Judge Richard J. Sullivan New York, NY 1964 2018–present Trump
71 Circuit Judge Joseph F. Bianco Central Islip, NY 1966 2019–present Trump
72 Circuit Judge Michael H. Park New York, NY 1976 2019–present Trump
73 Circuit Judge William J. Nardini New Haven, CT 1969 2019–present Trump
74 Circuit Judge Steven Menashi New York, NY 1979 2019–present Trump
75 Circuit Judge Eunice C. Lee New York, NY 1970 2021–present Biden
76 Circuit Judge Beth Robinson Burlington, VT 1965 2021–present Biden
77 Circuit Judge Myrna Pérez New York, NY 1974 2021–present Biden
39 Senior Circuit Judge Jon O. Newman Hartford, CT 1932 1979–1997 1993–1997 1997–present Carter
40 Senior Circuit Judge Amalya Lyle Kearse New York, NY 1937 1979–2002 2002–present Carter
48 Senior Circuit Judge John M. Walker Jr. New Haven, CT 1940 1989–2006 2000–2006 2006–present G.H.W. Bush
50 Senior Circuit Judge Dennis Jacobs New York, NY 1944 1992–2019 2006–2013 2019–present G.H.W. Bush
51 Senior Circuit Judge Pierre N. Leval New York, NY 1936 1993–2002 2002–present Clinton
52 Senior Circuit Judge Guido Calabresi New Haven, CT 1932 1994–2009 2009–present Clinton
56 Senior Circuit Judge Chester J. Straub inactive[3] 1937 1998–2008 2008–present Clinton
57 Senior Circuit Judge Robert D. Sack New York, NY 1939 1998–2009 2009–present Clinton
60 Senior Circuit Judge Barrington Daniels Parker Jr. New York, NY 1944 2001–2009 2009–present G.W. Bush
61 Senior Circuit Judge Reena Raggi Brooklyn, NY 1951 2002–2018 2018–present G.W. Bush
62 Senior Circuit Judge Richard C. Wesley Geneseo, NY 1949 2003–2016 2016–present G.W. Bush
65 Senior Circuit Judge Gerard E. Lynch New York, NY 1951 2009–2016 2016–present Obama
66 Senior Circuit Judge Denny Chin New York, NY 1954 2010–2021 2021–present Obama

Vacancies and pending nominations[edit]

Seat Prior judge's duty station Seat last held by Vacancy reason Date of vacancy Nominee Date of nomination
1 Syracuse, NY Rosemary S. Pooler Senior status TBD[4] Alison Nathan November 18, 2021
2 New Haven, CT José A. Cabranes
4 Susan L. Carney

List of former judges[edit]

# Judge State Born–died Active service Chief Judge Senior status Appointed by Reason for
1 William James Wallace NY 1837–1917 1891–1907[Note 1] Arthur retirement
2 Emile Henry Lacombe NY 1846–1924 1891–1916[Note 2] Cleveland retirement
3 Nathaniel Shipman CT 1828–1906 1892–1902 B. Harrison retirement
4 William Kneeland Townsend CT 1849–1907 1902–1907 T. Roosevelt death
5 Alfred Conkling Coxe Sr. NY 1847–1923 1902–1917 T. Roosevelt retirement
6 Henry Galbraith Ward NY 1851–1933 1907–1921[5] 1921–1924 T. Roosevelt retirement
7 Walter Chadwick Noyes CT 1865–1926 1907–1913[5] T. Roosevelt resignation
Martin Augustine Knapp NY 1843–1923 1910–1916 [6] reassigned to the 4th Circuit
8 Henry Wade Rogers CT 1853–1926 1913–1926 Wilson death
9 Charles Merrill Hough NY 1858–1927 1916–1927 Wilson death
10 Martin Thomas Manton NY 1880–1946 1918–1939 Wilson resignation
11 Julius Marshuetz Mayer NY 1865–1925 1921–1924 Harding resignation
12 Learned Hand NY 1872–1961 1924–1951 1948–1951 1951–1961 Coolidge death
13 Thomas Walter Swan CT 1877–1975 1926–1953 1951–1953 1953–1975 Coolidge death
14 Augustus Noble Hand NY 1869–1954 1927–1953 1953–1954 Coolidge death
15 Harrie B. Chase VT 1889–1969 1929–1954 1953–1954 1954–1969 Coolidge death
Julian Mack IL 1866–1943 1929–1940 1940–1943 [7] death
16 Charles Edward Clark CT 1889–1963 1939–1963 1954–1959 F. Roosevelt death
17 Robert P. Patterson NY 1891–1952 1939–1940 F. Roosevelt resignation
18 Jerome Frank NY 1889–1957 1941–1957 F. Roosevelt death
19 Harold Medina NY 1888–1990 1951–1958 1958–1980 Truman retirement
20 Carroll C. Hincks CT 1889–1964 1953–1959 1959–1964 Eisenhower death
21 John Marshall Harlan II NY 1899–1971 1954–1955 Eisenhower elevation to Supreme Court
22 Joseph Edward Lumbard NY 1901–1999 1955–1971 1959–1971 1971–1999 Eisenhower death
23 Sterry R. Waterman VT 1901–1984 1955–1970 1970–1984 Eisenhower death
24 Leonard P. Moore NY 1898–1982 1957–1971 1971–1982 Eisenhower death
25 Henry Friendly NY 1903–1986 1959–1974 1971–1973 1974–1986 Eisenhower death
26 John Joseph Smith CT 1904–1980 1960–1971 1971–1980 Eisenhower death
27 Irving Kaufman NY 1910–1992 1961–1987 1973–1980 1987–1992 Kennedy death
28 Paul R. Hays NY 1903–1980 1961–1974 1974–1980 Kennedy death
29 Thurgood Marshall NY 1908–1993 1961–1965 Kennedy resignation
30 Robert P. Anderson CT 1906–1978 1964–1971 1971–1978 L. Johnson death
31 Wilfred Feinberg NY 1920–2014 1966–1991 1980–1988 1991–2014 L. Johnson death
32 Walter Roe Mansfield NY 1911–1987 1971–1981 1981–1987 Nixon death
33 William Hughes Mulligan NY 1918–1996 1971–1981 Nixon resignation
34 James Lowell Oakes VT 1924–2007 1971–1992 1988–1992 1992–2007 Nixon death
35 William Homer Timbers CT 1915–1994 1971–1981 1981–1994 Nixon death
36 Murray Irwin Gurfein NY 1907–1979 1974–1979 Ford[8] death
37 Ellsworth Van Graafeiland NY 1915–2004 1974–1985 1985–2004 Ford death
38 Thomas Joseph Meskill CT 1928–2007 1975–1993 1992–1993 1993–2007 Ford death
41 Richard J. Cardamone NY 1925–2015 1981–1993 1993–2015 Reagan death
42 Lawrence W. Pierce NY 1924–2020 1981–1990 1990–1995 Reagan retirement
43 Ralph K. Winter Jr. CT 1935–2020 1981–2000 1997–2000 2000–2020 Reagan death
44 George C. Pratt NY 1928–present 1982–1993 1993–1995 Reagan retirement
45 Roger Miner NY 1934–2012 1985–1997 1997–2012 Reagan death
46 Frank X. Altimari NY 1928–1998 1985–1996 1996–1998 Reagan death
47 John Daniel Mahoney NY 1931–1996 1986–1996 Reagan death
49 Joseph M. McLaughlin NY 1933–2013 1990–1998 1998–2013 G.H.W. Bush death
54 Fred I. Parker VT 1938–2003 1994–2003 Clinton death
58 Sonia Sotomayor NY 1954–present 1998–2009 Clinton elevation to Supreme Court
59 Robert Katzmann NY 1953–2021 1999–2021 2013–2020 2021 Clinton death
63 Peter W. Hall VT 1948–2021 2004–2021 2021 G.W. Bush death
69 Christopher F. Droney CT 1954–present 2011–2019 2019–2020 Obama retirement
  1. ^ Wallace was appointed as a circuit judge for the Second Circuit in 1882 by Chester A. Arthur. The Judiciary Act of 1891 reassigned his seat to what is now the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.
  2. ^ Lacombe was appointed as a circuit judge for the Second Circuit in 1887 by Grover Cleveland. The Judiciary Act of 1891 reassigned his seat to what is now the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.

Chief judges[edit]

Chief Judge
Hand 1948–1951
Swan 1951–1953
Chase 1953–1954
Clark 1954–1959
Lumbard 1959–1971
Friendly 1971–1973
Kaufman 1973–1980
Feinberg 1980–1988
Oakes 1988–1992
Meskill 1992–1993
Newman 1993–1997
Winter 1997–2000
Walker 2000–2006
Jacobs 2006–2013
Katzmann 2013–2020
Livingston 2020–present

Chief judges have administrative responsibilities with respect to their circuits, and preside over any panel on which they serve unless the circuit justice (i.e., the Supreme Court justice responsible for the circuit) is also on the panel. Unlike the Supreme Court, where one justice is specifically nominated to be chief, the office of chief judge rotates among the circuit judges. To be chief, a judge must have been in active service on the court for at least one year, be under the age of 65, and have not previously served as chief judge. A vacancy is filled by the judge highest in seniority among the group of qualified judges. The chief judge serves for a term of seven years or until age 70, whichever occurs first. The age restrictions are waived if no members of the court would otherwise be qualified for the position.

When the office was created in 1948, the chief judge was the longest-serving judge who had not elected to retire on what has since 1958 been known as senior status or declined to serve as chief judge. After August 6, 1959, judges could not become or remain chief after turning 70 years old. The current rules have been in operation since October 1, 1982.

Succession of seats[edit]

The court has thirteen seats for active judges, numbered in the order in which they were initially filled. Judges who assume senior status enter a kind of retirement in which they remain on the bench, while vacating their seats, thus allowing the president to appoint new judges to fill their seats.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Facelift Scheduled for Federal Courthouse – The New York Sun". nysun.com. Retrieved June 18, 2016.
  2. ^ Solimine, Michael E. (Summer 2005). "Judicial Stratification and the Reputations of the United States Courts of Appeals". Florida State University Law Review. 32 (4): 1341–1342. Retrieved July 22, 2020.
  3. ^ "New York Law Journal". New York Law Journal. Retrieved March 24, 2018.
  4. ^ https://www.uscourts.gov/judges-judgeships/judicial-vacancies/future-judicial-vacancies. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  5. ^ a b Recess appointment, confirmed by the United States Senate at a later date.
  6. ^ Knapp did not have a permanent seat on this court. Instead, he was appointed to the ill-fated United States Commerce Court in 1910 by William Howard Taft. Aside from their duties on the Commerce Court, the judges of the Commerce Court also acted as at-large appellate judges, able to be assigned by the Chief Justice of the United States to whichever circuit most needed help. Knapp was assigned to the Second Circuit upon his commission.
  7. ^ Mack did not have a permanent seat on this court. Instead, he was appointed to the ill-fated United States Commerce Court in 1911 by William Howard Taft. Aside from their duties on the Commerce Court, the judges of the Commerce Court also acted as at-large appellate judges, able to be assigned by the Chief Justice of the United States to whichever circuit most needed help. Mack was assigned to the Seventh Circuit immediately prior to his joint assignment to the Second and Sixth Circuit. Reassigned solely to the Second Circuit in 1930.
  8. ^ Gurfein was nominated for a seat on the Second Circuit by President Nixon, but he was confirmed after Nixon's resignation and was appointed to the Second Circuit by (i.e., received his commission from) President Ford.

External links[edit]