Sanket Bulsara, center, is sworn in by Eastern District Chief Judge Dora Irizarry as a magistrate judge on August 28. He is the first South Asian-American to serve on the bench in the Second Circuit. His wife, Christine DeLorenzo, is at right. Douglas Palmer

Sanket Bulsara, who recently served as acting general counsel to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, has been appointed as a magistrate judge in the Eastern District of New York and is the first South Asian American to serve on the bench in the Second Circuit.

Before serving with the SEC, Bulsara spent a decade with Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr, making partner six years into his tenure in 2011.

While with Wilmer, Bulsara worked in white-collar defense and served as lead pro bono counsel in cases involving prisoner rights. He won a major case before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in which the court denied efforts by an abusive father in Italy to use the Hague Convention to extradite his two sons.

For their work on the Hague Convention case, Ermini v. Vittori, 13-2025, Bulsara and other Wilmer attorneys were given the Sanctuary for Family’s Above and Beyond award in 2013 and 2014.

Also during his time with Wilmer, Bulsara worked as a special prosecutor for the Brooklyn District Attorney’s Office, where he tried felony and misdemeanor cases.

After obtaining his J.D. from Harvard Law School in 2002, Bulsara clerked for U.S. District Judge John Koeltl of the Southern District of New York. He joined Munger, Tolles & Olson as an associate in 2003, and served from 2004-2005 as manager of planning and data analysis for the New York City Department of Education.

Born in the Bronx to two immigrants from India, Bulsara was raised in Queens.

According to a news release from the Eastern District, Bulsara was chosen for the bench from a field of five candidates who were recommended by the Magistrate Judge Merit Selection Committee.