7th Circuit Judge David Hamilton to take senior status in 2022

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Judge David F. Hamilton will take senior status from the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals next year.

Hamilton, who confirmed his plans with National Law Journal, will become eligible for the semi-retirement classification in May 2022.

Former President Barack Obama nominated Hamilton to the 7th Circuit in 2009.

The change is the second vacancy on the Chicago-based federal appellate court announced in 2021. In March, President Joe Biden nominated Candace Rae Jackson-Akiwumi  to the court to fill a seat vacated by Judge Joel Flaum. The Senate confirmed her three months later by a 53-40 vote.

Judges taking senior status must be at least 65 years old and have completed at least 15 years of active service.

“I advised the White House of those plans so that a successor can be nominated and confirmed,” Hamilton said in an email to the NLJ. “I have stated that I intend to continue doing substantial work as a senior judge for the foreseeable future. As for the decision, I will just say that it’s a deeply personal decision in which a lot of factors are relevant.”

Hamilton graduated from Haverford College and received his law degree at Yale Law School in 1983. Before serving on the 7th Circuit, Hamilton served as a judge on the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana beginning in 1994 and served as chief judge from 2008 to 2009.

Hamilton previously worked in private practice in Indianapolis and served as counsel for former Indiana Gov. Evan Bayh from 1989 to 1991.

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