Tag Archives: Leondra Kruger

Brown Appoints Leondra R. Kruger, 38, to State Supreme Court

Will join a block of young Brown-appointed justices

by Brian Leubitz

Governor Brown is making judicial appointments for the long-term. After appointing now Justices Liu and Cuéllar, he has appointed Deputy Assistant Attorney General Leondra R. Kruger to replace Justice Joyce Kennard. Here’s the quick bio:

Leondra R. Kruger, 38, of Washington, D.C., has served as a Deputy Assistant Attorney General at the U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Legal Counsel since 2013. She served as an Assistant to the Solicitor General and as Acting Principal Deputy Solicitor General in the U.S. Department of Justice, Office of the Solicitor General from 2007 to 2013. While serving in that office, she argued 12 cases on behalf of the federal government before the U.S. Supreme Court.

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Kruger was a visiting assistant professor at the University of Chicago Law School in 2007 and an associate at Wilmer, Cutler, Pickering, Hale and Dorr LLP from 2004 to 2006. She served as a law clerk to the Honorable John Paul Stevens on the U.S. Supreme Court from 2003 to 2004 and to the Honorable David S. Tatel on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit from 2002 to 2003. Kruger was an associate at Jenner and Block LLP from 2001 to 2002.

Beyond the CV details, the press release highlights some very impressive credentials for somebody under 40. Praise from solicitor generals under both Bush-43 and Obama is nothing to scoff at.

But it is interesting that Brown, in his fourth term, is picking for the long-haul on the Supreme Court. Justices Liu and Cuéllar are 44 and 42 respectively, meaning that with an additional retirement in the next four years, there could be a Brown-selected majority on the California Supreme Court for 30 years. Think about that, 30 years is several lifetimes in politics. But Brown is in the process of laying his fingerprints all over one branch of California government for those lifetimes.

It would be hard to argue that any of these picks were anything less than completely qualified for the job, while bringing additional diversity to the Court that already had a minority-majority. Kudos to the Governor for the pick, and congratulations to the future Justice Kruger.