United States District Court for the Middle District of Alabama

The United States District Court for the Middle District of Alabama (in case citations, M.D. Ala.) is a federal court in the Eleventh Circuit (except for patent claims and claims against the U.S. government under the Tucker Act, which are appealed to the Federal Circuit).

United States District Court for the Middle District of Alabama
(M.D. Ala.)
Seal of the United States District Court for the Middle District of Alabama.gif
MDAla.png
LocationFrank M. Johnson Jr. Federal Building and U.S. Courthouse
More locations
Appeals toEleventh Circuit
EstablishedFebruary 6, 1839
Judges3
Chief JudgeEmily Coody Marks
Officers of the court
U.S. AttorneyLouis V. Franklin Sr.
U.S. MarshalJesse Seroyer Jr.
www.almd.uscourts.gov

The District was established on February 6, 1839.[1]

The United States Attorney's Office for the Middle District of Alabama represents the United States in civil and criminal litigation in the court. The current United States Attorney is Louis V. Franklin Sr..

Organization of the courtEdit

The United States District Court for the Middle District of Alabama is one of three federal judicial districts in Alabama.[2] Court for the District is held at Dothan, Montgomery, and Opelika.

Eastern Division comprises the following counties: Chambers, Lee, Macon, Randolph, Russell, and Tallapoosa.

Northern Division comprises the following counties: Autauga, Barbour, Bullock, Butler, Chilton, Coosa, Covington, Crenshaw, Elmore, Lowndes, Montgomery, and Pike.

Southern Division comprises the following counties: Coffee, Dale, Geneva, Henry, and Houston.

Current judgesEdit

As of June 30, 2020:

# Title Judge Duty station Born Term of service Appointed by
Active Chief Senior
20 Chief Judge Emily Coody Marks Montgomery 1973 2018–present 2019–present Trump
22 District Judge R. Austin Huffaker Jr. Montgomery 1973 2019–present Trump
23 District Judge vacant
14 Senior Judge Myron Herbert Thompson Montgomery 1947 1980–2013 1991–1998 2013–present Carter
16 Senior Judge William Harold Albritton III Montgomery 1936 1991–2004 1998–2004 2004–present G.H.W. Bush
19 Senior Judge William Keith Watkins Montgomery 1951 2005–2019 2011–2019 2019–present G.W. Bush


Vacancies and pending nominationsEdit

Seat Prior Judge's Duty Station Seat last held by Vacancy reason Date of vacancy Nominee Nominated
4 Montgomery Andrew L. Brasher Elevation June 30, 2020 Edmund G. LaCour Jr. June 2, 2020

Former judgesEdit

# Judge State Born–died Active service Chief Judge Senior status Appointed by Reason for
termination
1 William Crawford AL 1784–1849 1839–1849[Note 1] Operation of law death
2 John Gayle AL 1792–1859 1849–1859[Note 1] Taylor death
3 William Giles Jones AL 1808–1883 1859–1861[Note 2][Note 1] Buchanan resignation
4 George Washington Lane AL 1806–1863 1861–1863[Note 1] Lincoln death
5 Richard Busteed AL 1822–1898 1863–1874[Note 3][Note 1] Lincoln resignation
6 John Bruce AL 1832–1901 1875–1901[Note 4][Note 5] Grant death
7 Thomas G. Jones AL 1844–1914 1901–1914[Note 6][Note 4] T. Roosevelt death
8 Henry De Lamar Clayton Jr. AL 1857–1929 1914–1929[Note 4] Wilson death
9 Charles Brents Kennamer AL 1874–1955 1931–1955[Note 7] Hoover death
10 Frank Minis Johnson AL 1918–1999 1955–1979[Note 8] 1966–1979 Eisenhower elevation to 5th Cir.
11 Thomas Virgil Pittman AL 1916–2012 1966–1970[Note 9] L. Johnson seat abolished
12 Robert Edward Varner AL 1921–2006 1971–1986 1979–1984 1986–2006 Nixon death
13 Truman McGill Hobbs AL 1921–2015 1980–1991 1984–1991 1991–2015 Carter death
15 Joel Fredrick Dubina AL 1947–present 1986–1990 Reagan elevation to 11th Cir.
17 Ira De Ment AL 1931–2011 1992–2002 2002–2011 G.H.W. Bush death
18 Mark Fuller AL 1958–present 2002–2015 2004–2011 G.W. Bush resignation
21 Andrew L. Brasher AL 1981–present 2019–2020 Trump elevation to 11th Cir.
  1. ^ a b c d e Jointly appointed to the Middle, Northern, and Southern Districts of Alabama.
  2. ^ Recess appointment; formally nominated on January 23, 1860, confirmed by the United States Senate on January 30, 1860, and received commission on January 30, 1860.
  3. ^ Recess appointment; formally nominated on January 5, 1864, confirmed by the Senate on January 20, 1864, and received commission on January 20, 1864.
  4. ^ a b c Jointly appointed to the Middle and Northern Districts of Alabama.
  5. ^ From 1875 to 1886, Judge Bruce was jointly appointed to the Southern District of Alabama.
  6. ^ Recess appointment; formally nominated on December 5, 1901, confirmed by the Senate on December 17, 1901, and received commission the same day.
  7. ^ From 1831 to 1836, Judge Kennamer was jointly appointed to the Middle and Northern Districts of Alabama.
  8. ^ Recess appointment; formally nominated on January 12, 1956, confirmed by the Senate on January 31, 1956, and received commission the same day.
  9. ^ Judge Pittman was jointly appointed to the Middle and Southern Districts of Alabama.

Chief judgesEdit

Chief judges have administrative responsibilities with respect to their district court. Unlike the Supreme Court, where one justice is specifically nominated to be chief, the office of chief judge rotates among the district court judges. To be chief, a judge must have been in active service on the court for at least one year, be under the age of 65, and have not previously served as chief judge. A vacancy is filled by the judge highest in seniority among the group of qualified judges. The chief judge serves for a term of seven years or until age 70, whichever occurs first. The age restrictions are waived if no members of the court would otherwise be qualified for the position.

When the office was created in 1948, the chief judge was the longest-serving judge who had not elected to retire on what has since 1958 been known as senior status or declined to serve as chief judge. After August 6, 1959, judges could not become or remain chief after turning 70 years old. The current rules have been in operation since October 1, 1982.

Succession of seatsEdit

Court decisionsEdit

Browder v. Gayle (1956) – Court rules that bus segregation in Montgomery was unconstitutional under the Fourteenth Amendment. Decision upheld by U.S. Supreme Court six months later.

Gomillion v. Lightfoot (1958) – Court dismissed action, which was later affirmed by the Fifth Circuit. In 1960, the U.S. Supreme Court reversed the decision, finding that electoral districts drawn in Tuskegee, with the purpose of disenfranchising black voters, violated the Fifteenth Amendment.

Lee v. Macon County Board of Education (1963) – Court rules segregation in schooling was unconstitutional under the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendment. Decision upheld by U.S. Supreme Court.[3]

United States v. Alabama (1966) – Court rules poll tax violates the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendment. U.S. Supreme Court concurred three weeks later in an unrelated case, Harper v. Virginia Board of Elections.

Glassroth v. Moore (2002) – Court rules that a display of the Ten Commandments, erected by Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore in the Alabama Judicial Building violated the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment.

U.S. AttorneysEdit

Name Term Started Term Ended Presidents served under
John A. Minnis 1870 1874 Ulysses S. Grant
N. S. McAfee 1874 1875 Ulysses S. Grant
Charles B. Mayer 1876 1880 Ulysses S. Grant
Rutherford B. Hayes
William H. Smith 1880 1885 Rutherford B. Hayes
James A. Garfield
Chester A. Arthur
Grover Cleveland
George H. Craig 1885 1885 Grover Cleveland
William H. Denson 1885 1889 Grover Cleveland
Benjamin Harrison
Lewis E. Parsons, Jr. 1889 1893 Benjamin Harrison
Grover Cleveland
Henry D. Clayton, Jr. 1893 1896 Grover Cleveland
George F. Moore, Jr. 1896 1897 Grover Cleveland
William McKinley
Warren S. Reese, Jr. 1897 1906 William McKinley
Theodore Roosevelt
Erastus J. Parsons[4] 1906 1913 Theodore Roosevelt
William H. Taft
Woodrow Wilson
Thomas D. Samford 1913 1924 Woodrow Wilson
Warren G. Harding
Calvin Coolidge
Grady Reynolds 1924 1931 Calvin Coolidge
Herbert Hoover
Arthur B. Chilton 1931 1934 Herbert Hoover
Franklin D. Roosevelt
Thomas D. Samford 1934 1942 Franklin D. Roosevelt
Edward B. Parker 1942 1953 Franklin D. Roosevelt
Harry S. Truman
Dwight D. Eisenhower
Hartwell Davis 1953 1962 Dwight D. Eisenhower
John F. Kennedy
Ben Hardeman 1962 1969 John F. Kennedy
Lyndon B. Johnson
Richard Nixon
Leon J. Hopper 1969 1969 Richard Nixon
Ira De Ment 1969 1977 Richard Nixon
Gerald Ford
Jimmy Carter
Barry E. Teague 1977 1981 Jimmy Carter
Ronald Reagan
John C. Bell 1981 1987 Ronald Reagan
James E. Wilson 1987 1994 Ronald Reagan
George H. W. Bush
Bill Clinton
Charles R. Pitt[5] 1994 2001[5] Bill Clinton
George W. Bush
Leura G. Canary[6][7] 2001[6][7] 2011[6][7] George W. Bush
Barack Obama
George L. Beck Jr.[8] 2011[8] 2017[9] Barack Obama
Donald Trump
A. Clark Morris[10][11] 2017 2017 Donald Trump
Louis V. Franklin Sr.[12] 2017[12] Present[13] Donald Trump

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

External linksEdit