Posts Tagged ‘Western District of Tennessee’
Friday, February 18th, 2011

U.S. Attorney Edward L. Stanton III announces the creation of the Civil Rights Unit in front of the Memphis hotel where Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated. (DOJ)

The Memphis U.S. Attorney’s office has established a Civil Rights Unit, Assistant Attorney General Thomas Perez of the Justice Department Civil Rights Division and U.S. Attorney Edward L. Stanton III of the Western District of Tennessee announced this week.

The new unit will prosecute cases involving hate crimes, discrimination, human trafficking, official misconduct and law enforcement public corruption. Perez and Stanton announced the establishment of the unit in front of the Memphis motel where civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated in 1968.

“The Justice Department is committed to enforcing our nation’s civil rights laws, and I am pleased that the Civil Rights Division has a strong partner here in Tennessee to help carry out this critical work,” Perez said, according to the DOJ.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Steve Parker of the Western District of Tennessee will lead the unit. Western District of Tennessee Assistant U.S. Attorneys Brian Coleman and Jonathan Skrmetti, who came to Memphis this year from the DOJ Civil Rights Division in Washington, will serve with Parker in the unit.

This story has been corrected to reflect that Skrmetti is an Assistant U.S. Attorney in Memphis who previously served in the DOJ Civil Rights Division.

Monday, December 20th, 2010

Attorney General Eric Holder paid tribute on Friday to the new U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Tennessee at the prosecutor’s ceremonial investiture in Memphis, The Commercial Appeal reported.

Edward L. Stanton III (DOJ)

Federal, state and local officials looked on as Holder commended U.S. Attorney Edward L. Stanton III for his intelligence, community work and dedication.

“I was really struck by his optimism,” Holder said, according to the newspaper. “He is a proud son of Memphis. Ed loves his hometown.”

Stanton said he will focus on fighting financial, violent and civil rights crimes as U.S. Attorney. He said he will create a division in his office that will bolster efforts to prosecute infractions of civil rights laws.

“We will succeed in becoming a stronger and safer and more vibrant community,” Stanton said, according to The Commercial Appeal. “Our next days will truly be our best days.”

Stanton has been U.S. Attorney since August. But, like many U.S. Attorneys, he decided to have a ceremonial investiture later on.

Holder has attended 16 U.S. Attorney swearing in ceremonies thus far.

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Thursday, December 16th, 2010

Edward L. Stanton III (DOJ)

Attorney General Eric Holder is scheduled to attend the ceremonial investiture for the Western District of Tennessee U.S. Attorney on Friday, a Justice Department spokesman told Main Justice.

Edward L. Stanton III officially was sworn in as the Memphis-based U.S. Attorney in August. But U.S. Attorneys often have a ceremonial investiture later on, with local, state and federal leaders present.

Holder has attended 15 U.S. Attorney swearing in ceremonies thus far.

Thursday, August 5th, 2010

The Senate confirmed six U.S. Attorneys by voice vote Thursday night.

They are:

Stephen Wigginton (Weilmuenster & Wigginton PC)

- Stephen R. Wigginton (Southern District of Illinois): President Barack Obama tapped the partner and co-owner of the Weilmuenster & Wigginton PC law firm in Belleville, Ill., on April 14 to replace George W. Bush holdover A. Courtney Cox, who headed the Fairview Heights, Ill.-based office since November 2007. Read more about Wigginton here.

- Edward L. Stanton III (Western District of Tennessee): The president nominated the Federal Express senior counsel on April 14 to succeed David Kustoff, who stepped down as U.S. Attorney in 2008. Read more about Stanton here.

Tim Purdon (Vogel Law Firm)

- Tim Purdon (North Dakota): The partner at the Vogel Law Firm in Bismarck, N.D., would succeed Drew Wrigley, who stepped down as U.S. Attorney in Sept. 2009. Obama nominated him on Feb. 4. The president has been criticized for tapping Purdon, who was on the executive committee of the North Dakota Democratic-NPL Party and has no prosecutorial experience. Read more about Purdon here.

John Walsh (Hill & Robbins)

- John F. Walsh (Colorado): The partner at Hill & Robbins PC will succeed Troy Eid, who resigned as U.S. Attorney last year. President Barack Obama nominated Walsh on April 14. Read more about him here.

Stephanie Villafuerte, the deputy chief of staff to Colorado Gov. Bill Ritter (D) for community outreach, was Obama’s first nominee for the Colorado post. But she withdrew her nomination after Republicans alleged she asked employees of the Denver district attorney’s office to access a restricted government database in connection with the 2006 gubernatorial campaign.

- John Vaudreuil (Western District of Wisconsin): Assistant U.S. Attorney in the office since 1980 will succeed Erik C. Peterson, who stepped down as U.S. Attorney in June 2009. Obama tapped Vaudreuil on May 27. Read more about him here.

- William Ihlenfeld II (Northern District of West Virginia): The partner at Ihlenfeld Law Office, PLLC, in Wheeling, W.Va., will replace acting U.S. Attorney Betsy Jividen. She has led the office since former U.S. Attorney Sharon L. Potter stepped down in September 2009. The president nominated Ihlenfeld on May 27. Read more about Ihlenfeld here.

UPDATE:

The Senate also confirmed three other U.S. Attorneys by voice vote Thursday night.

They are:

- Melinda Haag (Northern District of California): The partner at Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe will replace George W. Bush U.S. Attorney Joseph Russoniello. President Barack Obama nominated her on March 25. Read more about her here.

Barry R. Grissom (Law Office of Barry R. Grissom)

- Barry R. Grissom (Kansas): The Overland Park, Kan., lawyer will succeed Eric Melgren, who stepped down as U.S. Attorney in 2008. Obama tapped him on April 28. Read more about him here.

David Hickton (Burns, White and Hickton)

– David J. Hickton (Western District of Pennsylvania): The founding member of Burns, White & Hickton LLC will succeed Mary Beth Buchanan, who stepped down as U.S. Attorney in November 2009 to run for the House. But she didn’t win the Republican nomination in the race for the Western Pennsylvania seat held by Democratic Rep. Jason Altmire. Obama nominated Hickton on May 20. Read more about him here.

The Senate has now confirmed 66 U.S. Attorneys.  The body has yet to consider another 8 would-be U.S. Attorneys nominated by Obama. There are 93 U.S. Attorney posts.

Thursday, June 24th, 2010

The Senate Judiciary Committee approved by voice vote two more of President Barack Obama’s U.S. Attorney nominees at its meeting Thursday.

They are:

Stephen Wigginton (Weilmuenster & Wigginton PC)

- Stephen R. Wigginton (Southern District of Illinois): Obama tapped the partner and co-owner of the Weilmuenster & Wigginton PC law firm in Belleville, Ill., on April 14 to replace George W. Bush holdover A. Courtney Cox, who has headed the Fairview Heights, Ill.-based office since November 2007. Read more about Wigginton here.

- Edward L. Stanton III (Western District of Tennessee): The president nominated the Federal Express senior counsel on April 14 to succeed David Kustoff, who stepped down as U.S. Attorney in 2008. Read more about Stanton here.

Tim Purdon (Vogel Law Firm)

The panel delayed consideration of North Dakota U.S. Attorney nominee Tim Purdon until its next meeting. Committee Republicans can request to hold over a nominee one time.

President Barack Obama nominated the partner at the Vogel Law Firm in Bismarck, N.D., on Feb. 4 to succeed Drew Wrigley, who stepped down as U.S. Attorney in Sept. 2009. Obama has been criticized for tapping Purdon, who was on the executive committee of the North Dakota Democratic-NPL Party and has no prosecutorial experience. Read more about Purdon here.

The panel has now approved 59 of Obama’s U.S. Attorney nominees, 57 of whom have won Senate confirmation. The committee has yet to schedule votes for another 12 would-be U.S. Attorneys. There are 93 U.S. Attorney posts.

Thursday, June 17th, 2010

The Senate Judiciary Committee is scheduled to consider President Barack Obama’s nominee to lead the Western District of Tennessee U.S. Attorney’s Office at its meeting Thursday.

The panel is slated to vote on Federal Express senior counsel Edward L. Stanton III. He would succeed David Kustoff, who stepped down as U.S. Attorney in 2008. Read more about Stanton here.

The committee has yet to schedule votes for another 14 would-be U.S. Attorneys. The panel has approved 57 of Obama’s U.S. Attorney nominees, 51 of whom have won Senate confirmation. There are 93 U.S. Attorney posts.

Tuesday, April 27th, 2010

Edward L. Stanton III (University of Memphis, University of Memphis School of Law) is nominated to be U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Tennessee. He would replace David Kustoff, who headed the office from 2006 to May 2008. The district’s current interim U.S. Attorney is Lawrence J. Laurenzi.

Stanton’s vitals:

  • Born in Memphis in 1972.
  • Attended but did not earn a degree from Southwest Tennessee Community College in Memphis.
  • Has been senior counsel in the litigation department of the Federal Express Corporation in Memphis since December 2002.
  • Was an associate at Armstrong Allen PLLC in Memphis from September 2001 to December 2002.
  • Worked as an assistant city attorney in Memphis from May 2000 to September 2001.
  • Was an associate at the Law Offices of Charles E. Carpenter, PC in Memphis from August 1997 to May 2000.
  • Clerked for Judge James E. Swearengen in the Shelby County, Tenn., Circuit Court from April 1996 to April 1997.
  • Was a national advance team member for Clinton/Gore ‘96 in Washington, D.C., from July 1996 to November 1996.
  • Clerked for the University of Memphis’ Office of Legal Counsel from December 1995 to April 1997.
  • Worked as a graduate assistant in the University of Memphis’ Office of Judicial Affairs from December 1994 to November 1995.
  • Volunteered with Volunteers in Service to America (VISTA) in Memphis from May 1994 to August 1994.
  • Has tried approximately 12 cases to verdict or final decision, serving as sole counsel in all but two cases, where he served as chief/lead counsel.

Click here for his full Senate Judiciary Committee questionnaire.

UPDATE: On his Office of Government Ethics questionnaire Stanton reported earning a salary from the Federal Express Corporation of $199,211 for 2009 and the first few months of 2010.

On his Senate Judiciary financial disclosure Stanton reported assets valued at $898,500, mostly from two real estate properties, and $492,100 in liabilities, mostly from mortgages on the properties, for a net worth of $406,400.

Wednesday, April 14th, 2010

The White House announced seven new U.S. Attorney nominations Wednesday night.

They are:

Don Cazayoux (Gov)

- Don Cazayoux (Middle District of Louisiana): The former U.S. House member would replace Bush holdover David R. Dugas, who has served as U.S. Attorney since 2001. Read more about him here.

Pamela C. Marsh (Akerman Senterfitt)

- Pamela C. Marsh (Northern District of Florida): An of counsel for Akerman Senterfit and former Assistant U.S. Attorney, Marsh would succeed George Miller, who stepped down as U.S. Attorney in 2008. Read more about her here.

Zane D. Memeger (Morgan Lewis)

- Zane D. Memeger (Eastern District of Pennsylvania): The partner at Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP and former Assistant U.S. Attorney would succeed Pat Meehan, who resigned as U.S. Attorney in 2008. Read more about Memeger here.

- Peter J. Smith (Middle District of Pennsylvania): The former deputy state treasurer for the Pennsylvania Treasury Department and former Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania would succeed Martin C. Carlson, who resigned as U.S. Attorney last year. Read more about Smith here.

- Edward L. Stanton III (Western District of Tennessee): The senior counsel for Federal Express would succeed David Kustoff, who stepped down as U.S. Attorney in 2008. Read more about Stanton here.

John Walsh (Hill & Robbins)

- John F. Walsh (Colorado): The partner at Hill & Robbins PC would succeed Troy Eid, who resigned as U.S. Attorney last year. Read more about Walsh here.

Stephanie Villafuerte, the deputy chief of staff to Colorado Gov. Bill Ritter (D) for community outreach, was Obama’s first nominee for the Colorado post, but she withdrew her nomination after coming under fire for reportedly asking employees of the Denver district attorney’s office to access a restricted government database in connection with the 2006 gubernatorial campaign.

Stephen Wigginton (Weilmuenster & Wigginton)

- Stephen R. Wigginton (Southern District of Illinois): The Assistant State’s Attorney in Madison County, Ill., and partner at Weilmuenster & Wigginton PC would replace Bush holdover U.S. Attorney A. Courtney Cox. Read more about Wigginton here.

Obama has now made 67 U.S. Attorney nominations, 36 of whom have already won Senate confirmation.

On Wednesday, Attorney General Eric Holder called on panel members to move “more expeditiously” on U.S. Attorney nominees. He said the number of would-be U.S. Attorneys stalled in the Senate is “unusual.”

Sen. Jeff Sessions of Alabama, the committee’s ranking Republican, responded Wednesday that the panel shouldn’t be faulted for failing to get more U.S. Attorneys through the Senate. He said there is a “lack of nominations” coming out of the White House.

Thursday, April 1st, 2010

Michael Cody (Burch, Porter & Johnson)

A former U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Tennessee was named as the co-chairman of the Society of Attorneys General Emeritus, The Memphis Daily News reported Thursday.

Michael Cody, who was Tennessee’s attorney general for a term in the 1980s, earlier led the Memphis, Tenn.-based U.S. Attorney’s office from 1977 to 1981. Cody will chair the emeritus organization along with former New Hampshire Attorney General Stephen E. Merrill. The group, a networking and profession organization for former attorneys general, is a counterpart to the National Association of Attorneys General, which is composed of active state attorneys general.

The former U.S. Attorney, who is currently an attorney at Burch, Porter & Johnson in Memphis, also was a Memphis City Council member from 1975 to 1977.. Read more about him here.

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Tuesday, March 23rd, 2010

A senior attorney with FedEx Corp. is the leading candidate for the Western District of Tennessee U.S. Attorney nomination, an individual with knowledge of the nomination process told Main Justice Tuesday.

Edward L. Stanton III, a senior counsel with FedEx’s commercial litigation team, is going through a FBI background check, the individual said. The background check is typically the last step for a U.S. Attorney candidate before nomination. We reported Monday that Nashville, Tenn., lawyer Jerry Martin is also undergoing his FBI background check for the Middle District of Tennessee U.S. Attorney nomination.

Stanton has been with FedEx since 2002 and previously served as an assistant city attorney for Memphis, Tenn. The senior FedEx counsel, a Democrat, also ran for Congress in 2006.

He declined to comment to Main Justice.

If nominated by President Barack Obama and confirmed by the Senate, the senior FedEx counsel would succeed Lawrence J. Laurenzi. The last Senate-confirmed U.S. Attorney in the district was David Kustoff, who stepped down as U.S. Attorney for the Memphis-based office in May 2008.