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Latinos for a Fair Judiciary applauds nomination of Myrna Pérez to 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals; Urges Swift Confirmation Process

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

PRESS RELEASE

June 22, 2021
 

Press contacts:

Elianne Ramos | Chief Communications Officer | [email protected] | 212.739.7513
Sarai Bejarano | Manager of Traditional & Digital Media | [email protected] | 212-739-7581

Latinos for a Fair Judiciary applauds nomination of Myrna Pérez to 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals; Urges Swift Confirmation Process
The coalition also called on the Biden Administration to move quickly in naming additional highly qualified, and long overdue, Latinos to the federal bench

Washington, DC-  Representing a coalition of prominent Latino civic organizations from across the legal and nonprofit communities, Latinos for a Fair Judiciary (LFJ) expressed its strong support for the nomination of Myrna Pérez to the Second Circuit Court of Appeals and urges the U.S. Senate to quickly consider and approve her confirmation.

“Though it has taken too many years to get another Latina on the very important Second Circuit Court of Appeals, Myrna Perez is a worthy successor to Justice Sonia Sotomayor on that court,” said Thomas A. Saenz, MALDEF president and general counsel.  “Her wisdom, intellect, and compassion will result in positive change for the population of the states in the Second Circuit.”

As director of voting rights and election programs at New York University’s Brennan Center for Justice, Pérez is one of the most highly regarded voting rights attorneys in the country. A first-generation college student and graduate of Columbia Law School, she clerked for Judge Anita B. Brody of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania and for Judge Julio M. Fuentes of the United States Third Circuit Court of Appeals before serving as a Civil Rights Fellow at Relman, Dane & Colfax. Pérez was also the chair of the Election Law Committee of the City of New York Bar Association and was the recipient of Puerto Rican Bar Association Award for Excellence in Academia.

In addition to her professional accolades, Pérez is an active community servant where she sits on the board of Crossroads Prison Ministries and Sojourners, and has served on the Board of Grace Community Services in Jersey City. She also volunteers for social justice causes that address food insecurity. If confirmed, Pérez would be the first Latina on that circuit since the elevation of Justice Sonia Sotomayor to the Supreme Court in 2009.

“Myrna Pérez’s experience, intellect, and temperament make her eminently qualified to serve on the Second Circuit Court of Appeals,” said Elia Diaz-Yaeger, National President of the Hispanic National Bar Association. “Ms. Pérez has a strong career as both a litigator and legal academic, and has maintained the highest ethical standards. We thank President Biden for nominating Myrna Pérez and we urge him to continue prioritizing the nomination of judicial candidates from diverse personal and professional backgrounds.”

Although LFJ applauds the Biden administration’s efforts to nominate women and people of color to federal benches during its first five months, Latinos continue to be underrepresented in all branches of the federal government, specifically in the judiciary. According to a study by the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights, only 8 percent of active federal judges identify as Latino despite the fact that Latinos are the nation's largest minority group, representing almost 20 percent of the U.S. population.

“This is an important step from the Biden administration to begin to correct the imbalance of federal judgeships and truly diversify the federal bench,” stated Juan Cartagena, President & General Counsel of LatinoJustice PRLDEF. “More needs to be done, clearly. Ms. Perez brings a wealth of voting rights experience to the bench making this nomination particularly meaningful. We look forward to a smooth confirmation process.”

Advocating for the appointment of Latino judges to key Federal circuit and district courts, LFJ and other Latino organizations will continue to urge the Biden administration and the U.S. Senate to nominate and confirm judges who will bring diverse perspectives and a commitment to equal justice to the Federal bench. 

For more information about LFJ’s initiatives and advocacy efforts, visit latinosforafairjudiciary.org.

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Latinos for a Fair Judiciary (LFJ) provides Latino leaders across the nation a platform and voice in matters related to our nation’s judicial system. LFJ is an unaffiliated, non-partisan, independent network of elected officials, legal, civil rights, labor, academic and political leaders who care deeply about the impact that the Supreme Court has on the Latino community. Our mission is to raise public awareness around the pressing legal issues Latinos are facing and call attention to the significance of the Supreme Court.

About LatinoJustice
LatinoJustice PRLDEF works to create a more just society by using and challenging the rule of law to secure transformative, equitable and accessible justice, by empowering our community and by fostering leadership through advocacy and education. For more than 40 years, LatinoJustice PRLDEF has acted as an advocate against injustices throughout New York and beyond. To learn more about LatinoJustice, visit www.LatinoJustice.org