Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton has recommended three former federal prosecutors – Anjali Chaturvedi, Michael Bromwich and Ron Machen – for U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia, according to various people familiar with the process.
We previously reported here that the three lawyers interviewed with Norton, after her 17-member commission narrowed the field of U.S. Attorney applicants. Norton sent her recommendations to the White House in late August, according to one person. The process has been airtight, so bear with us.
Two people told us that Chaturvedi, a partner at Nixon Peabody LLP who specializes in government investigations and complex civil and criminal matters, made the cut. She has a combined 12 years experience as an Assistant U.S. Attorney on both the East and West coasts. She was chief of the Organized Crime Strike Force for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of California and deputy chief of the Felony Trial Section in the D.C. office.
Another person familiar with the matter indicated that Bromwich was on the list. A former Justice Department inspector general, Bromwich now heads the internal investigations, compliance and monitoring practice group at at Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP. Bromwich was an AUSA in the Southern District of New York in the 1980s and later served as associate counsel in the Office of Independent Counsel for Iran-Contra.
And three people told us Norton recommended Machen, a partner at Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr LLP. Machen worked in the Fraud and Public Corruption and Homicide sections of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia from 1997 to 2001. At Wilmer, he has represented a slew of high-profile clients, including Boeing Co., CitiGroup Inc., and Mitchell Wade, the defense contractor who pleaded guilty to bribing then-Rep. Randy “Duke” Cunningham (R-Calif.).
Absent from the list, apparently, is Channing Phillips, a veteran prosecutor and acting U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia. We could not confirm whether Phillips interviewed with Norton in August, but he enjoys strong support within the office.
Phillips joined the office in 1994 as a line prosecutor. In 2004, he was tapped as principal deputy assistant attorney general, the office’s No. 2. Phillips was also the office’s chief spokesman. He was named acting U.S. attorney in May, after Jeffrey Taylor stepped down for a position at Ernst & Young.
Norton’s recommendations cap the local phase of the selection process, which began in April. Phillips, Chaturvedi and Bromwich declined to comment. Machen could not be reached.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia is the largest in the country, with more than 350 Assistant U.S. Attorneys and more than 350 support staff. The office prosecutes federal and local crimes.