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Howard Markey, the first chief judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, died at age 85 last week after suffering from a long illness. During his eight years leading the court, Markey helped mold the institution and build its national stature. He was “the person who welded the two disparate predecessor courts into a very coherent, effective whole,” says Judge Pauline Newman, who served alongside Markey on the Federal Circuit. Markey began his career in Chicago, where he graduated from law school and specialized in patent law and food and drug cases. His work won him the favor of President Richard Nixon, who appointed him as chief judge of the U.S. Court of Customs and Patent Appeals in 1972. Markey remained there until the court merged into the Federal Circuit in 1982. After his retirement from the bench in 1991, Markey served as dean of the John Marshall Law School.
Emma Schwartz can be contacted at [email protected].

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