She had a model to follow at her firm, McDonald Carano Wilson in Reno, from which U.S. District Judge Larry Hicks had made the same transition. That didn't make the process easy. "I still had a lot of work coming in," Du said. "I don't know what would have happened if the process had been longer."
Du had to introduce institutional clients to other partners. She pretty much stopped taking new work, especially in federal court. She was able to continue working on state court litigation, but had to plan for someone else to handle any trials.
In one case, "I was supposed to be taking the lead, but I took a secondary role," Du said. "I was right I was confirmed before the trial was scheduled."
Du considers herself fortunate because her voyage from nomination to confirmation was shorter than that of many of her colleagues. Additionally, she was backed by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, who represents Nevada.
"I knew he was working on it," Du said. "And he would call and say, 'Hang in there, I don't want you to be discouraged.' "
Easier said than done. "I think it's still a tough process, because, emotionally, you're in a situation where you don't have any control," Du said. "Especially for lawyers, that is difficult."
Todd Ruger can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.