Richard Young

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Richard Young
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Current Court Information:
United States District Court for the Southern District of Indiana
Title:   Chief Judge
Position:   Seat #5
Appointed by:   Bill Clinton
Active:   3/6/1998 - Present
Chief:   2009 - Present
Preceded by:   Gene Brooks
Personal History
Born:   1953
Hometown:   Davenport, IA
Undergraduate:   Drake U., B.A., 1975
Law School:   George Mason U. School of Law, J.D., 1980

Richard Young is the Chief Judge of the United States District Court for the Southern District of Indiana. He joined the court in 1998 after being nominated by President Bill Clinton.

Early life and education

Born in Davenport, Louisiana, Young graduated from Drake University with his bachelor's degree in 1975 and received a Juris Doctor degree from George Mason University School of Law in 1980.[1]

Professional career

Young was a private practice attorney in Indiana from 1980 to 1990. Young served as a Public Defender for the Vanderburgh County from 1983 to 1985 and also served as Corporation counsel for the City of Evansville from 1985 to 1987. Young was a circuit court judge in the Vanderburgh County Circuit Court from 1990 to 1998.[1]

Judicial career

Southern District of Indiana

On the recommendation of U.S. Senator Evan Bayh, Young was nominated to the United States District Court for the Southern District of Indiana by President Bill Clinton on July 15, 1997 to a seat vacated by Gene Brooks as Brooks assumed senior status. Young was confirmed by the Senate on March 2, 1998 on a Senate vote and received commission on March 6, 1998.[2]

Notable cases

Judge rules that Indiana must recognize same-sex marriages from other states (2014)

     United States District Court for the Southern District of Indiana (Bowling v Pence, 1:14-cv-00405-RLY-TAB)

Judge Richard Young's ruling on August 19, 2014, held that Indiana's ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional. This was not the judge's first decision to allow such marriages in the state. A couple months prior, he made a similar decision (see below). However, his rulings have been stayed pending appeal.

At issue in Bowling v. Pence was whether Indiana would recognize same-sex marriages that occurred in other states.[3]

Young also touched on the issue of whether Governor Mike Pence should be included in the same-sex marriage lawsuits. Pence had previously argued that he had no authority to enforce the state's same-sex marriage laws. However, after Young first struck down the state's ban on such marriages in June, Gov. Pence issued a memo saying that the ban was still effective and that the judge's ruling should be disregarded. Young responded, writing in the Bowling order:

The court, after witnessing the Governor do what he claimed he could not do, reverses course and finds him to be a proper party to such lawsuits. The court wishes to reiterate that it finds the Governor's prior representations contradicting such authority to be, at a minimum, troubling.[4][5]

Indiana must recognize out of state same-sex marriage (2014)

     United States District Court for the Southern District of Indiana (BASKIN V. BOGAN, 1:14-cv-00355-RLY-TAB)

Judge Richard Young was the presiding judge in a case where same-sex couples wanted their marriages to be recognized in Indiana. Judge Young expedited a ruling for one of the couples in the case, the couple of Amy Sandler and Niki Quasney. In 2009, Quasney was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. Her and her spouse Sandler were legally married in Massachusetts and sued to have their marriage recognized in Indiana so when Quasney passes away they could have an accurate death certificate that would allow Sandler to take care of their children and assests.[6] Judge Young issued a 28-day injunction on April 10, 2014, allowing only their marriage to be recognized during this time. The other couples in the case will have their cases heard at the non-expedited pace.[6] Judge Young made the injunction permanent in a ruling on May 8 ,2014. The ruling means that Indiana will be required to recognize Sandler and Quasney's marriage indefinitely.[7]

Indiana must perform and recognize same-sex marriages (2014)

     United States District Court for the Southern District of Indiana (BASKIN V. BOGAN, 1:14-cv-00406-RLY-MJD)

Judge Richard Young ruled on June 25, 2014, that Indiana must recognized and allow same-sex marriage. Young issued a permanent injunction requiring the state to immediately start performing same-sex marriages. Similar to the other same-sex marriage rulings, Judge Young found the state in violation of the Fourteenth Amendment:
The court agrees with Plaintiffs. “Fundamental rights, once recognized, cannot be

denied to particular groups on the ground that these groups have historically been denied those rights.”[8][5]

Judge Young consolidated two other Indiana cases, Lee v. Pence and Midori Fujii v. State of Indiana, in to the Baskin v. Bogan ruling on June 27, 2014. He chose not to stay his ruling pending an appeal but the Seventh Circuit issued a stay on late on June 27, 2014.[9][10]

See also

External links


Federal judicial offices
Preceded by:
Gene Brooks
Southern District of Indiana
Seat #5
Succeeded by: