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Obama nominates Scott Matheson Jr. to court of appeals

Obama nominates Scott Matheson Jr. to court of appeals

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WASHINGTON, D.C. -- President Barack Obama on Wednesday nominated Scott M. Matheson, Jr. to the United States Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit.

"Scott Matheson is a distinguished candidate for the Tenth Circuit court," President Obama said. "Both his legal and academic credentials are impressive and his commitment to judicial integrity is unwavering. I am honored to nominate this lifelong Utahn to the federal bench."

Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, said, "I'm pleased President Obama has nominated Scott Matheson to fill the vacancy on the Tenth Circuit. I've known Scott a long time and he is a capable, bright attorney whose experience has prepared him for judicial service. The Matheson family has had a significant impact on Utah and can rightly be proud of Scott's nomination."

"I'm very pleased that President Obama selected Scott to serve as a judge on the federal bench," Rep. Jason Chaffetz said. "His distinguished scholarship as an attorney and law school dean, and his devoted public service to Utah and to the United States, make him an excellent nominee. Good choice, Mr. President. Good choice."

Matheson is the son of former Gov. Scott Matheson Sr., and the brother of Utah Rep. Jim Matheson. He also made a run for Utah's governor in 2004 as the Democratic nominee.

He currently holds the Hugh B. Brown Presidential Endowed Chair at the S.J. Quinney College of Law, University of Utah, where he has been a member of the faculty since 1985. He served as Dean of the Law School from 1998 to 2006. He also taught First Amendment Law at Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government from 1989 to 1990.

From 1993 to 1997, Matheson served as United States Attorney for the District of Utah. In 2007, he was appointed by Gov. Jon Huntsman Jr. to chair the Utah Mine Safety Commission. He also worked as a Deputy County Attorney for Salt Lake County from 1988 to 1989. Prior to joining the university faculty, Matheson was an associate attorney from 1981 to 1985 at Williams & Connolly LLP in Washington, D.C.

If confirmed by the Senate, he would replace Michael McConnell who resigned his lifelong appointment in August 2009 to teach at Stanford University.

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