By Megan Dooley
Two attorneys from Oak Park and River Forest have been recommended to President Barack Obama for consideration for federal judgeships, out of five total Chicago-area lawyers. The five candidates are up for appointment to one of three vacant federal court seats for the Northern District of Illinois.
River Forest resident Julie Bauer was one of four attorneys recommended by Illinois Senator Dick Durbin for a judgeship. Oak Parker John Tharp was recommended by Senator Mark Kirk.
Bauer, an 11-year resident of River Forest, is a partner at Chicago's Winston & Strawn law firm, where she's worked since 1987.
"I am very honored to be considered for this important position and I thank the senator," Bauer said of the nomination.
In a press release posted on his website, Durbin praised the screening committee responsible for reviewing each candidate's application, and said the four attorneys chosen are all highly qualified for the judgeship. "After meeting personally with the recommended applicants, I am honored to forward the names of four well-qualified individuals with proven track records to President Obama. Each of them would make an excellent nominee for federal district court judge if selected," read a statement from Durbin.
Tharp, an Oak Park resident for more than 20 years, has been a partner at Mayer Brown law firm since 1999, two years after he began working at the firm. He was the only judgeship candidate recommended by Kirk.
"I was very honored," Tharp said, upon hearing the news. "I'm happy to be the one that senator has recommended."
"It's time to put Illinois corruption and Blogojevich-style politics behind us," read a statement by Kirk, in a press release posted on the senator's website. "As a prosecutor and a lawyer, John Tharp is uniquely qualified to both serve as a federal judge and to send a signal that Illinois is not synonymous with corruption."