December 21, 2017

Warner & Kaine Recommend Two For Vacancy On U.S. District Court For The Eastern District Of Virginia

WASHINGTON —Today, U.S. Sens. Mark R. Warner and Tim Kaine (both D-VA) sent a letter to the White House recommending Patricia Tolliver Giles and Judge Rossie David Alston, Jr. to fill the vacancy on the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District following the retirement of Judge Gerald Lee.

Giles and Alston both were recommended by an independent panel of attorneys from across the Commonwealth selected by Sens. Warner and Kaine to interview qualified applicants. Giles is currently an assistant U.S. attorney in the Eastern District of Virginia, and Alston has served as a judge of the Court of Appeals of Virginia since 2009.

“Under his tenure, Judge Lee served with great distinction on the bench and in the legal community. While presiding over a court with one of the busiest dockets in the country, Judge Lee tirelessly mentored youths in the community and fostered the careers of generations of lawyers from the minority Bar,” wrote the Senators. “Consistent with these values, we believe both Ms. Giles and Judge Alston would continue Judge Lee’s legacy…Ultimately, we believe either of these individuals would serve in the judiciary with great distinction and we are honored to recommend them to you.”

The White House will now nominate one individual to be considered by the Senate Judiciary Committee. The nomination is subject to confirmation by the full Senate.

The full text of today’s letter appears below.

The Honorable Donald J. Trump

President of the United States

The White House

1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW

Washington, DC 20500

Dear Mr. President,

We are pleased to recommend Ms. Patricia Tolliver Giles and Judge Rossie David Alston, Jr. for the vacancy in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia left vacant by Judge Gerald Bruce Lee, who retired in September. Under his tenure, Judge Lee served with great distinction on the bench and in the legal community. While presiding over a court with one of the busiest dockets in the country, Judge Lee tirelessly mentored youths in the community and fostered the careers of generations of lawyers from the minority Bar.

Consistent with these values, we believe both Ms. Giles and Judge Alston would continue Judge Lee’s legacy. As Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Eastern District of Virginia, Ms. Giles serves on the Major Crimes Unit, where she has risen to prosecute some of the most serious cases in the office, including prosecution of MS-13 gang members for capital murder of a federal witness. Our advisory panel and various Bar Associations in the Commonwealth found her record most impressive.

Key members of the Virginia Bar also spoke highly of Judge Alston, who first joined the Commonwealth bench in 1998 and received an appointment to the Virginia Court of Appeals in 2009. He has also devoted significant time to the legal community, where he is an active member of various Bar associations, including the Old Dominion Bar. As a Distinguished Adjunct Professor at the Antonin Scalia Law School at George Mason University, he has taught courses in trial advocacy, criminal courts, and professional development. On Friday nights, Judge Alston changes his judicial robe for referee stripes to officiate Virginia high school football games. 

Ultimately, we believe either of these individuals would serve in the judiciary with great distinction and we are honored to recommend them to you.

Sincerely,

# # #