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Johnnie Rawlinson

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Johnnie Rawlinson
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Current Court Information:
United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
Title:   Judge
Station:   Las Vegas, NV
Appointed by:   Bill Clinton
Active:   07/26/2000 - Present
Preceded by:   Melvin Brunetti
Past post:   District of Nevada
Past term:   1998-2000
Past position:   Seat #2
Personal History
Born:   1952
Hometown:   Concord, NC
Undergraduate:   North Carolina A&T State University 1974
Law School:   University of the Pacific 1979
Johnnie B. Rawlinson is a federal judge with the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in San Francisco. She joined the court in 2000 after being nominated by President Bill Clinton.


Born in Concord, North Carolina, Rawlinson graduated from North Carolina A&T with her B.A. in 1974, and in 1979, received a J.D. from the University of the Pacific's McGeorge Law School.[1]

Professional career

  • 1980-1998: Office of the District Attorney, Las Vegas, Nevada
  • 1995-1998: Assistant district attorney
  • 1989-1995: Chief deputy district attorney
  • 1980-1989: Deputy district attorney
  • 1980: Staff attorney, Nevada Legal Services, Las Vegas, Nevada
  • 1979-1980: Attorney in private practice, Las Vegas, Nevada[1]

Judicial career

Ninth Circuit

On the recommendation of U.S. Senator Harry Reid, Rawlinson was nominated to the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit by President Bill Clinton on February 22, 2000, to a seat vacated by Melvin Brunetti. Rawlinson was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on July 21, 2000, on a majority voice vote and received commission on July 26, 2000.[2]

District of Nevada

On the recommendation of U.S. Senator Harry Reid, Rawlinson was nominated to the United States District Court for the District of Nevada by President Bill Clinton on January 27, 1998, to a seat vacated by Lloyd George. She was confirmed by the Senate on April 2, 1998, and received her commission on April 7, 1998.[3] She then became the first female judge of the U.S. District Court bench in Nevada.[4] Rawlinson was succeeded in this position by Larry Hicks.

Notable cases

Ninth Circuit rules that protections for endangered species must remain intact (2014)

In March 2014, a three-judge panel of the Ninth Circuit, comprised of Judges Rawlinson, Jay Bybee and Morris Arnold (sitting by designation), reversed a decision originally reached by Judge Oliver Wanger of the Eastern District of California. The majority opinion was written by Judge Bybee, who found that protections must remain intact for the delta smelt, an endangered species. The decision was considered a blow to those agencies that lobbied to do away with the delta smelt’s protections.


Former Fairbanks mayor corruption case (2009)

     United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit (U.S. v. James C. Hayes, 4:07-cr-00005-JWS-2)

Judge Rawlinson was on a three-judge panel that denied the second hearing request of former Fairbanks, Alaska, Mayor Jim Hayes, who was convicted in 2008 for helping his wife steal money from social service agencies. Attorneys for Hayes argued that District of Alaska Judge John Sedwick's failure to allow testimony from the Mayor's wife prejudiced his case, as her testimony would have affected the outcome of the trial. Judge Rawlinson, along with Judges Joseph Farris and David Thompson, voted against the re-hearing request.[5]

See also

External links


Federal judicial offices
Preceded by:
Lloyd George
District of Nevada
Seat #2
Succeeded by:
Larry Hicks
Preceded by:
Melvin Brunetti
Ninth Circuit
Succeeded by:

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