Jeffrey A. Meyer, a former federal prosecutor who teaches constitutional and environmental law, has been nominated to the U.S. District Court for Connecticut.
Meyer, on the faculty of Quinnipiac University School of Law, will fill the vacancy created by the death of Judge Mark R. Kravitz, upon confirmation.
Meyer’s name has been frequently mentioned as a top candidate in the selection process. The federal bench in Connecticut has had more than its share of vacancies over the past three years, due to deaths, retirements and the elevation of Christopher F. Droney to the Second Circuit Court of Appeals.
Brad Saxton, dean of the School of Law at Quinnipiac University, said Meyer will be missed as a member of the faculty. "He has been a wonderful colleague, and he will be an extraordinarily good judge." He added, " I can’t think of a better candidate for this position, and I know that he will serve as judge with great intelligence, energy, compassion, fairness and wisdom."
Meyer was nominated by U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal, with the assent of Senator Chris Murphy. The news was announced by President Barack Obama on Friday, June 7.
An honors graduate of Yale College and Yale Law School in 1989, Meyer was also Fulbright Scholar in Ecuador, studying and applying rural development economics in the Andes mountains.
After law school, he clerked for Chief Judge James L. Oakes of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, and Justice Harry A. Blackmun at the U.S. Supreme Court.
As a staff attorney with Vermont Legal Aid, Meyer represented defendants in mental health civil commitment proceedings. He next moved to Washington, D.C., to work in complex civil trial work at Shearman and Sterling.
In 1995, he became a criminal prosecutor with the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Connecticut, focusing on financial, environmental, and civil-rights cases. From 2000 to 2004, he supervised the office’s appellate practice section.
In his most in-depth investigation, he worked with former Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker investigating corrupt kickbacks in the United Nations’ Oil-for-food program in Iraq, More recently, Meyer has been working for the city of New Haven on a panel researching police department reforms.
Connecticut Bar Association President Barry Hawkins said he was in the process of sending a letter to federal practice section chair William Clendenen, to begin the process of reviewing Meyer’s qualifications and making its own recommendation. The American Bar Association will also weigh in with an opinion. The CBA gives federal judicial candidates a three page questionnaire, and its review process, said Hawkins, "takes a matter of months."