THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release September 14, 2009
President Obama Nominates Justice Barbara Milano Keenan
for United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
WASHINGTON, DC – President Obama today nominated Justice Barbara Milano Keenan for a seat on the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. Justice Keenan is currently a Justice on the Virginia Supreme Court, a seat she has held since 1991.
"Justice Keenan has a long and distinguished record of service on the bench," President Obama said. "She was the first female judge elected in the state of Virginia and the only woman appointed to the Virginia Court of Appeals upon its creation. Her commitment to fairness and judicial integrity has been unwavering throughout her career, and I am honored to nominate her today to serve on the United States Court of Appeals."
Justice Barbara Milano Keenan: Nominee for the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
Justice Barbara Milano Keenan currently serves on the Supreme Court of Virginia, a seat she has held since 1991. In 1980, she became the first female judge in the state of Virginia when she was elected to the General District Court of Fairfax County. Two years later, she became the first female circuit court judge in Virginia when she was elected to the Circuit Court of Fairfax County. She was then the only woman appointed to the Court of Appeals of Virginia upon its creation in 1985. When she was elected to the Supreme Court in 1991, she also became the first judge on that Court to have served at all four levels of Virginia’s judicial system.
Justice Keenan received a B.A. from Cornell University in 1971 and a J.D. from George Washington University Law School in 1974. In 1992, she also received a Masters from the University of Virginia Law School. Prior to becoming a judge, she served as a prosecutor in Fairfax County, Virginia from 1974 to 1976, and worked in private practice from 1976 to 1980, first as a solo practitioner and later at the firm of Keenan, Ardis and Roehrenbeck. In the spring of 2009, Virginia Lawyers Media named Justice Keenan the "Influential Woman of the Year." She has received a well-qualified rating from the ABA and is being nominated to the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.