In advance of Judge Amul Thapar’s confirmation hearing today, we sent a letter to the Judiciary Committee expressing our support of his nomination. The full text of the letter is below.


April 25, 2017

The Honorable Charles E. Grassley, Chairman
Committee on the Judiciary
United States Senate
224 Dirksen Office Building
Washington, DC 20510
Via Email: Ted_Lehman@judiciary-rep.senate.gov

The Honorable Dianne Feinstein, Ranking Member
Committee on the Judiciary
United States Senate
331 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510
Via Email: paige_herwig@Judiciary-dem.senate.gov

Re:  Nomination of Amul R. Thapar to be United States Circuit Judge for the Sixth Circuit

Dear Chairman Grassley and Ranking Member Feinstein:

The South Asian Bar Association of North America (SABA North America) proudly supports Judge Amul R. Thapar’s nomination to the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals. Our organization serves as the umbrella for 26 regional SABAs throughout the United States and Canada. The rapidly growing South Asian American legal community in the U.S. makes significant contributions in public service, private practice and academia. Our members represent the spectrum of attorneys, from law firm partners and in-house counsel to public interest attorneys and those serving local and federal government.

Judge Thapar has been a groundbreaker throughout his legal career. He was one of the first South Asian U.S. Attorneys ever appointed. He went on to be the first South Asian Article III judge in United States history, at which time he was also the youngest judge.  If confirmed, Judge Thapar would only be the second United States Court of Appeals judge of South Asian descent. SABA North America recognized the ground-breaking nature of Judge Thapar’s career by awarding him our Pioneer Award in 2007.

Judge Thapar has distinguished himself as a leading jurist in the federal judiciary. He is well-known for his clear and thoughtful opinions, which have been recognized as “exemplary legal writing” by the Green Bag, a quarterly legal journal. He has presided over numerous complex civil and criminal trials and has decided appeals when sitting by designation on the Courts of Appeals for the Sixth and Eleventh Circuits.  We echo our comments from our 2007 letter supporting his confirmation as a judge in the Eastern District of Kentucky, “Judge Thapar is eminently qualified for the federal bench. He possesses the intelligence, temperament, work ethic, and sense of justice required to fairly decide any controversy that may come before him.” With an additional decade of experience presiding over challenging cases, he is all the more suited to be elevated to a position on the Court of Appeals.

Judge Thapar’s dedication to legal scholarship extends outside the courtroom. He is a frequent lecturer at campuses across the United States—including the University of Virginia School of Law, Vanderbilt Law School, and the Northern Kentucky University Chase College of Law. Judge Thapar organizes annual programs connecting students from regional Kentucky law schools with federal judges and practitioners.

Judge Thapar is a champion of diversity in the profession. He serves as a mentor to an array of clerks from a wide range of geographic, political, educational, ethnic and cultural backgrounds. By maintaining diverse chambers, he ensures that his decisions are thoroughly debated before becoming binding law. He also serves on SABA North America’s National Advisory Council.

Judge Thapar’s career demonstrates that his values are consonant with SABA North America’s mission to promote diversity and inclusion in the legal profession. As such, confirming Judge Thapar to the Sixth Circuit is another step towards ensuring that the judiciary reflects the diversity of our country, expanding access to the bench and the bar, and improving the quality of federal decision-making.

We thus wholeheartedly support his nomination.

Sincerely,

Vichal Kumar
President, SABA North America