John Noonan

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John Noonan
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Current Court Information:
United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
Title:   Senior Judge
Station:   San Francisco, CA
Appointed by:   Ronald Reagan
Active:   12/17/1985-12/27/1996
Senior:   12/27/1996-Present
Past post:   Professor, Boalt Hall School of Law
Past term:   1966 - 1986
Personal History
Born:   1926
Undergraduate:   Harvard College 1946
Law School:   Catholic University of America 1949
Grad. School:   Catholic University of America 1951

John T. Noonan, Jr. (b. 1926) is a federal appeals judge with the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit based in San Francisco. He joined the court in 1985 after being nominated by President Ronald Reagan. Noonan is serving on senior status.

Early life and education

Noonan graduated from Harvard College with his bachelor's degree in 1946. From the Catholic University of America he graduated with his Master's degree in 1949 and his Ph.D. degree in 1951.[1]

Professional career

  • 1966-1986: Professor of law, University of California, Berkeley, Boalt Hall School of Law
  • 1963-1966: Professor of law, Notre Dame Law School
  • 1961-1963: Associate professor of law, Notre Dame Law School
  • 1955-1960: Private practice, Boston, Massachusetts
  • 1954-1955: Special staff/assistant to Robert Cutler, National Security Council[1]

Judicial career

On the recommendation of Senator Pete Wilson, Noonan was nominated by Ronald Reagan on October 16, 1985 to a new seat created by 98 Stat. 333 which was approved by Congress. He was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on December 16, 1985 on a Senate vote and received commission on December 17, 1985. Noonan assumed senior status on December 27, 1996.[1]

Notable Cases

Shark fin ban case (2013)

  Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals
Judge Noonan was a member of a three judge panel that ruled a ban on shark fins was not racially driven. Along with Judge Andrew Hurwitz and Judge Stephen Reinhardt, Judge Noonan heard a case where Chinese-Americans were attempting to have an injunction issued on a California law that banned the practice of shark finning. The process which involved catching sharks, removing the fins and returning the dead shark back to the water was banned in 2012. The Chinatown Neighborhood Association asked for the injunction on the grounds that the law, which took effect in 2012, was racist; since shark fin soup is a common dish and tradition in the Chinese-American community. Judge Phyllis Hamilton, a district judge, ruled that the legislators who drafted the law had no intention of discriminating against the Chinese-Americans and denied an injunction. The Chinatown Neighborhood Association then appealed to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals where the three panel judge affirmed the lower courts ruling, stating

This text is quoted verbatim from the original source. Any inconsistencies are attributed to the original source.

The District Court did not abuse its discretion in determining that Chinatown failed to prove a likelihood of irreparable harm... Chinatown offered only evidence suggesting that business owners would suffer some economic harm from operation of the Shark Fin Law.[2]

See also

External links


Federal judicial offices
Preceded by:
NA - new seat
Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals
Succeeded by:
Marsha Berzon

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