Press Release

Eunice Lee Latest Public Defender Confirmed To Appeals Court

August 7, 2021

WASHINGTON, D.C., August 7, 2021 – The Senate voted 50–47 today to confirm Eunice Lee to the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. She is the fourth of President Biden’s nominees to be confirmed to the federal appeals courts, all of whom have been Black women. Lee is also the third to have experience as a public defender, and will be the only former public defender on the Second Circuit.

Lee spent over two decades with the Office of the Appellate Defender (OAD) in New York City. Most recently, she joined the Federal Defenders of New York in 2019 as a staff attorney. In her career, Lee has represented over 380 indigent clients in both federal and state appellate courts, focusing primarily on post-conviction relief. She has represented clients in numerous habeas proceedings in federal court, one of the most frequent types of cases heard by federal courts of appeal.

Alliance for Justice President Nan Aron issued the following statement:

“President Biden and Senate leadership have set a new historical precedent for the speedy confirmation of well qualified federal judges. Eunice Lee is both a former public defender and a woman of color who is bringing incredibly important professional and demographic diversity to our courts. She will serve our country capably and with the highest level of professional integrity.

“President Biden must be commended for his dedication to quickly filling every existing vacancy on the federal bench with brilliant legal minds like Judge Lee.  With Republican senators promising to completely obstruct the judicial confirmation process if they regain the majority, this pace must continue and, in fact, escalate dramatically.”