Biden nominates Indian American Shalina Kumar as federal judge

Kumar would be the first federal judge of South Asian descent in Michigan.

President Joe Biden has nominated Indian American Shalina D. Kumar, Chief Judge on the Oakland County Sixth Circuit Court, to the US District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan

Kumar would be the first federal judge of South Asian descent in Michigan, the White House noted announcing her nomination with eight new candidates for the federal bench and one new candidate for District of Columbia courts.

All the nominees in Biden’s fifth round of names for federal judicial positions are “extraordinarily qualified, experienced, and devoted to the rule of law and our Constitution,” it said.

Read: Here are some of the top Indian American judges (July 23, 2020)

“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 — both in terms of personal and professional backgrounds,” the White House said.

Kumar, who has served on Oakland County Sixth Circuit Court since 2007, was appointed Chief Judge of the Circuit Court by the Michigan Supreme Court in January of 2018.

In addition to her chief judge duties, Kumar retains a full caseload covering both civil and criminal matters.

Throughout her years on the bench, Kumar has served as a presiding judge of the Adult Treatment Court, the Chairperson of the Oakland County Criminal Assignment Committee, the bench liaison to the Oakland County Bar Association Circuit Court Committee, a member of the Michigan State Bar Professionalism Committee, and a member of the Executive Committee of the Michigan Judges’ Association.

Read: Biden nominates Indian-American Shalina Kumar as federal judge in Michigan (June 30, 2021)

Prior to taking the bench, Kumar was a civil litigator in private practice from 1997 to 2007, including as an associate with Weiner & Cox PLC from 2004 to 2007 and Sommers, Schwartz, Silver & Schwartz PC from 2000 to 2004.

Kumar graduated from the University of Michigan in 1993 and the University of Detroit-Mercy School of Law in 1996.

Kumar is a member of the South Asian Bar Association of North America and has been supported by IMPACT, a prominent Indian American advocacy group.

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