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IU Maurer taps federal judge criticized by Trump for visitor's board

March 1, 2017

A federal judge who was the target of President Donald Trump’s verbal attack has been appointed to the Board of Visitors at the Indiana University Maurer School of Law.

Judge Gonzalo Curiel of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California is among five IU Maurer alumni appointed to the Board of Visitors. In making the announcement, Dean Austen Parrish praised the five for their contributions to the legal profession.

“We are honored that five more of the nation’s leaders in private practice, business and the judiciary have agreed to join” the Board of Visitors, Parrish said. “They bring such a wealth of experience and expertise, and I look forward to working with them.”

Born in East Chicago, Indiana, to Mexican immigrants, Curiel graduated from the Bloomington law school in 1979 and practiced in Indiana until 1989. Then he moved to California to become an assistant U.S. attorney in San Diego and Los Angeles. Curiel moved to the bench when he became a judge in the San Diego Superior Court in 2006. Six years later, he was elevated to the federal judiciary by President Barack Obama.

He came onto to Trump’s radar during the 2016 presidential campaign when Curiel was presiding over a lawsuit against Trump University. Trump questioned Curiel’s impartiality, insinuating because he is “of Mexican heritage,” he did not like the then-presidential candidate’s call for building a wall along the Mexican border.

In November 2016, Trump agreed to a $25 million to settle allegations of fraud filed against his university.

The other alumni appointed are Betsey Greene, partner at Greene & Schultz Trial Lawyers in Bloomington; Steven Post, retired senior vice president, general counsel and corporate secretary of L-3 Communications; Laurier Robinson Haden, senior vice president and assistant general counsel at CBS Corp.; and Randolph Seger, partner at Bingham Greenebaum Doll LLP in Indianapolis.

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