President chooses magistrate for judgeship

Michael W. Hoskins
January 1, 2008
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President George W. Bush has nominated an Indianapolis federal magistrate to replace Judge John D. Tinder who recently took a seat on the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals.

The president on Thursday sent a nomination to the Senate for Magistrate Judge William T. Lawrence, who's been on the federal bench since November 2002. Magistrate Judge Lawrence was one of seven nominations sent, including nominations for the U.S. Tax Court. Republican Sen. Richard Lugar recommended the Indianapolis magistrate for the position.

"I have known Billy Lawrence for a number of years, and I am impressed with his high energy, resolute integrity, and dedication to public service," Lugar wrote in an e-mail to Indiana Lawyer this morning. "Perhaps more importantly, I am impressed by his temperament which is critical for this important role. He has an impeccable reputation and is well respected in the legal community and on both sides of the political aisle."

Prior to the federal bench, Magistrate Judge Lawrence served as Marion Circuit judge since 1996 after working as a part-time master commissioner for more than 13 years. He had been a part-time public defender in the county for nine years.

The 1973 graduate of Indiana University School of Law - Indianapolis has served in multiple leadership positions since being admitted to the bar that year. Lugar previously appointed him as executive director of Indiana's first Merit Selection Commission on Federal Judicial Appointments. Magistrate Judge Lawrence has also been elected to the Indiana Judicial Conference's board of directors three times.

If confirmed for the judgeship, Magistrate Judge Lawrence would succeed Judge Tinder, who the president nominated for the federal appeals court last summer. He took that seat late last year after being confirmed by the Senate.

Magistrate Judge Lawrence will have to go before the Senate Judiciary Committee and the full Senate in order to be appointed as judge. No deadline is set for when that must happen, and spokesman Andy Fisher in Lugar's office said he didn't yet know a timeline for Senate consideration.

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  1. If a class action suit or other manner of retribution is possible, count me in. I have email and voicemail from the man. He colluded with opposing counsel, I am certain. My case was damaged so severely it nearly lost me everything and I am still paying dearly.

  2. There's probably a lot of blame that can be cast around for Indiana Tech's abysmal bar passage rate this last February. The folks who decided that Indiana, a state with roughly 16,000 to 18,000 attorneys, needs a fifth law school need to question the motives that drove their support of this project. Others, who have been "strong supporters" of the law school, should likewise ask themselves why they believe this institution should be supported. Is it because it fills some real need in the state? Or is it, instead, nothing more than a resume builder for those who teach there part-time? And others who make excuses for the students' poor performance, especially those who offer nothing more than conspiracy theories to back up their claims--who are they helping? What evidence do they have to support their posturing? Ultimately, though, like most everything in life, whether one succeeds or fails is entirely within one's own hands. At least one student from Indiana Tech proved this when he/she took and passed the February bar. A second Indiana Tech student proved this when they took the bar in another state and passed. As for the remaining 9 who took the bar and didn't pass (apparently, one of the students successfully appealed his/her original score), it's now up to them (and nobody else) to ensure that they pass on their second attempt. These folks should feel no shame; many currently successful practicing attorneys failed the bar exam on their first try. These same attorneys picked themselves up, dusted themselves off, and got back to the rigorous study needed to ensure they would pass on their second go 'round. This is what the Indiana Tech students who didn't pass the first time need to do. Of course, none of this answers such questions as whether Indiana Tech should be accredited by the ABA, whether the school should keep its doors open, or, most importantly, whether it should have even opened its doors in the first place. Those who promoted the idea of a fifth law school in Indiana need to do a lot of soul-searching regarding their decisions. These same people should never be allowed, again, to have a say about the future of legal education in this state or anywhere else. Indiana already has four law schools. That's probably one more than it really needs. But it's more than enough.

  3. This man Steve Hubbard goes on any online post or forum he can find and tries to push his company. He said court reporters would be obsolete a few years ago, yet here we are. How does he have time to search out every single post about court reporters and even spy in private court reporting forums if his company is so successful???? Dude, get a life. And back to what this post was about, I agree that some national firms cause a huge problem.

  4. rensselaer imdiana is doing same thing to children from the judge to attorney and dfs staff they need to be investigated as well

  5. Sex offenders are victims twice, once when they are molested as kids, and again when they repeat the behavior, you never see money spent on helping them do you. That's why this circle continues