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David Ebel

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David Ebel
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Current Court Information:
United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
Title:   Senior Judge
Appointed by:   Ronald Reagan
Active:   04/20/1988 - 01/15/2006
Senior:   01/16/2006 - Present
Personal History
Hometown:   Wichita, KS
Undergraduate:   Northwestern U., B.A., 1962
Law School:   University of Michigan Law, J.D., 1965
David M. Ebel is a federal judge serving on senior status on the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit. He joined the court in 1987 after being nominated by President Ronald Reagan.

Early life and education

Born in Wichita, Kansas, Ebel received a bachelor's degree from Northwestern University in 1962, and his Juris Doctor degree in 1965 from the University of Michigan Law School.[1]

Professional career

Ebel was a law clerk for Associate Justice of the United States Supreme Court, Justice Byron White, in the Supreme Court of the United States from 1965 to 1966. Ebel was a private practice attorney in Denver, Colorado, from 1966 to 1988. Ebel also served as an Adjunct Professor of Law at the University of Denver Law School from 1987 to 1989, and as a Senior Lecturing Fellow at Duke University Law School from 1992 to 1994.[1]

Judicial career

Ebel was nominated to the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit by Ronald Reagan on December 18, 1987, to a seat vacated by William Edward Doyle. Ebel was confirmed by the Senate on April 19, 1988, and received commission on April 20, 1988. Ebel assumed senior status on January 16, 2006.[2]

Notable cases

Horse slaughterhouses may reopen prior to resolution of appeal (2013)

     United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit (Front Range Equine Rescue, et al v. Vilsack, et al, 13-2187)

On December 13, 2013, Judges Gregory Alan Phillips and David Ebel of the Tenth Circuit denied an emergency motion filed by animal rights groups for an injunction seeking to halt horse slaughterhouses from resuming operations for the first time since 2007. Plaintiffs requested a stay on those activities pending final resolution of their appeal, but "failed to meet their burden," according to the judges' decision. In the underlying case, animal rights groups sought to prevent the slaughter of horses in New Mexico, Missouri, and Iowa, claiming that the U.S. Department of Agriculture issued inspection permits to three slaughterhouses, but failed to prepare various documents essential to determining the environmental impact of their intended operations, in violation of the National Environmental Policy Act. Chief Judge Christina Armijo of the United States District Court for the District of New Mexico temporarily enjoined the slaughter of horses while considering the case, but later dismissed the proceedings with prejudice. The plaintiff animal rights groups appealed to the Tenth Circuit, and on November 5, 2013, the appeals court issued a temporary stay of Judge Armijo's decision pending further review. About one month later, Judges Phillips and Ebel lifted that stay, citing the plaintiffs' likelihood of success in the final resolution of their appeal, making way for horse slaughterhouses to begin operations.[3][4]

Court sides with Abercrombie in religious discrimination case (2013)

     United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission v. Abercrombie & Fitch Stores, Inc., 11-5110)

On October 1, 2013, the Tenth Circuit vacated a trial court summary judgment ruling in a suit filed by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) on behalf of a would-be Muslim employee after the clothing store Abercrombie & Fitch (A&F) declined to hire her because she wore a headscarf. Judge Jerome Holmes wrote for the majority, joined by Judge Paul Kelly. Judge David Ebel wrote separately, concurring in part and dissenting in part. In the underlying case, the plaintiff, Samantha Elauf, interviewed for a job at A&F while wearing a religious headscarf, but did not specifically inform her interviewer that she wore it for a religious purpose; the interviewer merely assumed that it was worn for a religious purpose. Ultimately, Elauf was not hired because her headscarf violated A&F's dress code. In the ruling, Holmes noted that the trial court's decision was erroneous -- there can be no religious discrimination without notification of the need for a religious accommodation. Here, because Elauf failed to tell her interviewer that she would need an accommodation for her religious headscarf, the EEOC would not have been unable to conclusively establish that A&F had actual notice of her religious needs. In his separate opinion, Ebel agreed that the trial court's decision was incorrect, but argued that the question of discrimination should have been sent to a jury.[5][6]

See also

External links


Federal judicial offices
Preceded by:
William Edward Doyle
Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals
Succeeded by:
Neil Gorsuch