Holly Thomas, President Joe Biden’s nominee for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, on Wednesday repeatedly drew a line between her past advocacy work and her approach to the bench as Senate Republicans raised briefs she filed as an attorney.

Thomas, who currently sits on the Los Angeles County Superior Court, was announced by the Biden White House last month as a nominee for the federal appeals court. If confirmed, she will be the second Black woman to ever sit on that court, and the first Black woman from California to do so.