Biden nominates Indian-American woman circuit court chief judge as federal judge

Nominated by Biden to the US District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan, Chief Judge Shalina has served on the Oakland County Sixth Circuit Court since 2007.

US President Joe Biden has nominated Indian-American circuit court chief judge Shalina D Kumar as a federal judge for the Eastern District of Michigan, the White House announced on Wednesday.

Nominated by Biden to the US District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan, Chief Judge Shalina has served on the Oakland County Sixth Circuit Court since 2007. She was appointed Chief Judge of the Circuit Court by the Michigan Supreme Court in January of 2018, a media release said.

Shalina would be the first federal judge of South Asian descent in Michigan, the White House said.

In addition to her chief judge duties, Judge Shalina retains a full caseload covering both civil and criminal matters, the White House said.

Throughout her years on the bench, Shalina has served as a presiding judge of the Adult Treatment Court, the Chairperson of the Oakland County Criminal Assignment Committee, the bench liaison to the Oakland County Bar Association Circuit Court Committee, a member of the Michigan State Bar Professionalism Committee, and a member of the Executive Committee of the Michigan Judges’ Association.

Prior to taking the bench, Shalina was a civil litigator in private practice from 1997 to 2007, including as an associate with Weiner & Cox P.L.C. from 2004 to 2007 and Sommers, Schwartz, Silver & Schwartz P.C. from 2000 to 2004.

She graduated from the University of Michigan in 1993 and the University of Detroit-Mercy School of Law in 1996.

She was appointed judge for the 6th Circuit Court in Oakland County, Michigan by former Governor Jennifer Granholm on August 20, 2007, to fill the vacancy created by the retirement of Judge Gene Schnelz. Shalina was then elected to the court in 2008 and re-elected in 2014.

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