Courts

Biden nominee could be historic first for Sacramento’s federal court

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — President Joe Biden on Wednesday tapped a Fresno County judge for a federal judicial position that would make her a historic first for Sacramento’s federal court.

Ana Isabel de Alba, if confirmed by the United States Senate, would be the first Latina to ever serve as a federal judge in California’s Eastern District, based out of several courthouses in Northern California, including the Robert T. Matsui building in Downtown Sacramento. The court oversees litigation relating to federal law in 36 counties including Placer, Yolo, and Sacramento.

Alba has served as a Superior Court judge in Fresno County since being nominated by then-Governor Jerry Brown in 2018. Before that, she worked as a partner and associate at Lang Richet & Patch, where she worked cases involving employment, business, civil tort, and construction. She received her JD and B.A. degrees from UC Berkeley in 2007 and 2002, respectively.

In a statement released by the White House, Biden nominated Alba alongside seven others, all of whom he described as “extraordinarily qualified, experienced, and devoted to the rule of law and our Constitution.”

“These choices also continue to fulfill the President’s promise to ensure that the nation’s courts reflect the diversity that is one of our greatest assets as a country,” the statement said. “Both in terms of personal and professional backgrounds.”

Alba’s nomination was met with rousing approval from California senators Alex Padilla and Dianne Feinstein.

“We applaud President Biden’s nominations of Judge Ana de Alba and Robert Huie to serve on California’s district courts,” the senators said. “Both of these outstanding nominees will bring to the federal bench a demonstrated commitment to justice and a career of excellence in the law. We urge our colleagues to support their swift confirmation.”

The senate already confirmed Biden’s previous nominee, Jennifer L. Thurston, who serves as a US District Judge for the Fresno duty station. Several other positions, currently held by figurehead judges who are effectively retired, could be filled if Biden announces any more nominations.

Ethan Biando
Ethan Biando is a freelance journalist from Sacramento. His writing focuses on crime, courts, and policing. Find him on Twitter @ethanb822

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