Trailblazer Sri Srinivasan was on Friday sworn in as judge of the second most powerful court of the United States, making him the first Indian-American to be on the bench of the U.S. Courts of Appeal for the District of Columbia Circuit.
Chandigarh-born Srinivasan, 46, whose parents migrated to the United States in 1970s, was sworn in the oath of office in an overflowing court room of U.S. Courts of Appeal for the District of Columbia Circuit by Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, in presence of legal luminaries, friends and families.
Gursharan Kaur, the wife of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, was present on the occasion when Srinivasan took the oath of office on the Gita with his mother Saroja Srinivasan holding the holy book for him.
Gursharan Kaur, literally drive off directly from the airport, with a brief stopover at the hotel, to be in time for the swearing in ceremony of the Indian-American.
It was in May this year that Srinivasan was confirmed by the U.S. Senate by a huge 97-0 vote.
He is the first South Asian American to serve as a circuit court judge in American history.
The retired Supreme Court justice Sandra Day O’Connor who administered the oath of office called Srinivasan “fair, faultless and fabulous.”
He once clerked for her. Addressing the gathering, Srinivasan acknowledged the contribution of his parents and family on his achievements.
Srinivasan was first nominated by Obama on June 11, 2012. On January 2, his nomination was returned to the President, due to the sine die adjournment of the Senate.
On January 3, 2013, Obama re-nominated him for the same office.
His appointment is a testimony to his credibility and calibre as a brilliant legal luminary of the US.
Srinivasan was previously the principal deputy solicitor general of the United States.
He is a highly-respected appellate advocate who has spent a distinguished career litigating before the U.S. Supreme Court and the U.S. Courts of Appeals, both on behalf of the United States and in private practice.
Born in India to Indian parents, Srikanth “Sri” Srinivasan’s well-deserved rise to the top echelons of the American judiciary – the first by an Indian-American to such a position – is a matter of great pride and satisfaction for India and the Indian-American community, and yet another proof of the sterling contributions of the community to U.S. society and indeed, to India-US relations.
Srinivasan began his legal career by serving as a law clerk for Judge J Harvie Wilkinson on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit from 1995 to 1996.
He then spent a year as a Bristow Fellow in the Office of the Solicitor General before clerking for Justice Sandra Day O’Connor during the Supreme Court’s 1997-98 term.
He was an associate at the law firm of O’Melveny & Myers LLP in Washington, DC from 1998 until 2002.
In 2002, he returned to the Solicitor General’s Office as an assistant to the Solicitor General, representing the United States in litigation before the Supreme Court.
For his work, he received the Attorney General’s Award for Excellence in Furthering U.S. National Security in 2003 and the Office of the Secretary of Defense Award for Excellence in 2005.
In 2007, Srinivasan became a partner with O’Melveny & Myers LLP.
In 2011, he was named the chair of the firm’s Appellate Practice Group.
He was named as the principal deputy solicitor general in August 2011.
Srinivasan is widely recognised as one of the country’s leading appellate and Supreme Court advocates.
He has argued before the Supreme Court twenty times, drafted briefs in several dozen additional cases, and has also served as lead counsel in numerous cases before the federal and state appellate courts.
He has also served as a lecturer at Harvard Law School, where he taught a class on appellate advocacy.
Chandigarh-born Srinivasan grew up in Lawrence, Kansas. He received his BA with honours and distinction in 1989 from Stanford University and his JD with distinction in 1995 from Stanford Law School, where he was elected to Order of the Coif and served as an editor of the Stanford Law Review.
He also holds an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business, which he received along with his JD in 1995.
Srinivasan’s mother is from Chennai and father was from Tirunelveli.
His parents came to the U.S. in the 1960s, returned to India, and then back in 1971 to Kansas.
Source: The Times of India