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|Current Court Information:|
|United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit|
|Appointed by:||George W. Bush|
|Active:||4/16/2002 - 4/30/2013|
|Senior:||4/30/2013 - Present|
|Preceded by:||Wade Brorby|
|Succeeded by:||Gregory Alan Phillips|
|Past post:||Sixth Judicial District Court of Wyoming|
|Undergraduate:||University of Wyoming '65|
|Law School:||University of Wyoming Law '72|
Terrence O'Brien (b. 1943) is a federal judge serving on senior status for the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit. He joined the court in 2002 after being nominated by President George W. Bush. Prior to nomination, O'Brien served as a judge on the Sixth Judicial District Court of Wyoming. He assumed senior status on April 30, 2013.
Early life and education
Born in Lincoln, Nebraska, O'Brien graduated from the University of Wyoming with his bachelor's degree in 1965 and later from the University of Wyoming Law School with his Juris Doctor degree in 1972. O'Brien was a member of the United States Army, Ordinance Corps from 1966-1969.
O'Brien was a Staff Attorney in the Environment & Natural Resources Division, Appellate Section of the United States Department of Justice from 1972 to 1974. O'Brien entered private practice in Wyoming from 1974 to 1980. He served as District Judge for the Sixth Judicial District Court of Wyoming from 1980-2000.
O'Brien was nominated to the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit by President George W. Bush on September 4, 2001 to a seat vacated by Wade Brorby as Brorby assumed senior status. O'Brien was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on April 15, 2002 on Senate vote and received commission on April 16, 2002. On April 30, 2013, Judge Terrence O'Brien assumed senior status for the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit after serving on the court for nearly 20 years.
Oklahoma Sharia Law temporary injunction (2012)United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit (Awad v. Ziriax, et al, 10-6273)
On January 10, 2012, the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals released an anticipated ruling. The decision by the panel of Judges Terrence O'Brien, Scott Matheson and Monroe McKay, upheld a previous ruling by Judge Vicki Miles-LaGrange, out of the United States District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma, that said Oklahoma's "Sharia Law" ballot measure was unconstitutional. Supported by 70% of the state's population in 2010, the amendment prohibited courts in the state from considering international or Sharia law in deciding cases.
The Tenth Circuit Court disagreed with the supporters of the amendment, who insisted that the measure was intended to disallow courts from considering any religious law in their proceedings. As a response, the opinion states, "That argument conflicts with the amendment's plain language, which mentions sharia law in two places.Because the amendment was thought to discriminate against a specific religion, in this case, Islam, strict scrutiny was applied to judging its contents. Courts often utilize a higher level of scrutiny when it is concerned a minority is being unfairly treated.
- Judge Terrence O'Brien Federal Judicial Center Biography
- "THOMAS" Terrence O'Brien USCA, 10th Cir. confirmation:PN882-107
- U.S. Courts Current Vacancies
- ABAJournal.com, "10th Circuit Says Federal Judge Got It Right, Correctly Blocked Okla. Voter Ban on Shariah Law," January 10, 2012
- Los Angeles Times, "Appeals court affirms order blocking Oklahoma sharia law ban," January 10, 2012
|Federal judicial offices|
|Sixth District of Wyoming
Michael N. Deegan
|Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals
Gregory Alan Phillips
Chief Judge: Mary Briscoe • Jerome Holmes • Neil Gorsuch • Timothy Tymkovich • Harris Hartz • Carlos Lucero • Paul Kelly • Carolyn McHugh • Nancy Caplinger-Moritz • Robert Bacharach • Scott Matheson • Gregory Alan Phillips
|Former judges||William E. Doyle • Robert Henry • Michael McConnell • William Holloway • Robert McWilliams • James Barrett • John Hazelton Cotteral • Robert E. Lewis • Robert Williams • Orie Leon Phillips • George Thomas McDermott • Sam Gilbert Bratton • Alfred Murrah • Walter Huxman • David Thomas Lewis • Jean Breitenstein • Delmas Hill • John Hickey • James Logan • John Pickett • Oliver Seth •|
|Former Chief judges|