Wayne Andersen

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Wayne Andersen
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Current Court Information:
United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
Title:   Former Judge (retired)
Position:   Seat #8
Appointed by:   George H.W. Bush
Active:   11/18/1991 - 7/31/2010
Preceded by:   Stanley Roszkowski
Succeeded by:   Thomas M. Durkin
Personal History
Born:   1945
Hometown:   Chicago, IL
Undergraduate:   Harvard University, B.A., 1967
Law School:   University of Illinois College of Law, J.D., 1970

Wayne R. Andersen is a former Article III federal judge in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, which is one of the busiest federal courts in the nation. He joined the court in 1991 after being nominated by President George H.W. Bush. He retired on July 31, 2010.[1]

Early life and education

Born in Chicago, Illinois, Anderson attended Harvard and graduated in 1967. He received his juris doctorate degree from the University of Illinois Law School in Champaign in 1970.[1]

Professional career

  • Administrative assistant, Majority Leader Henry Hyde, Illinois House of Representatives, 1970-72
  • Private practice, Chicago, Illinois, 1972-1980
  • Deputy secretary of state of Illinois, Office of Secretary of State Jim Edgar, 1981-1984
  • Judge, Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois, 1984-1991
  • Supervising Judge, Chicago Traffic Court, Chicago, Illinois, 1989-1991[1][2]

Judicial career

Northern District of Illinois

Andersen was nominated to the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois by President George H.W. Bush on July 24, 1991, to a seat vacated by Stanley Roszkowski. Andersen was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on November 15, 1991, and received commission on November 18, 1991. His service was terminated on July 31, 2010 due to retirement.[1]

Pressing For More Judicial Security

Wayne Andersen has been a very vocal critic to improve security of federal judges after a notable incident against a fellow judge's family in 2005.

Andersen voiced this criticism after U.S. District Judge Joan Humphrey Lefkow discovered the bodies of her husband and mother were murdered.

The killings came a month before white supremacist Matthew Hale was scheduled to be sentenced for trying to have Lefkow killed over her handling of a trademark case involving the name of his group.

"This horrible tragedy has got to serve as the basis for a substantial increase of security for judges and their families," Andersen said in an interview with The Associated Press. "The Internet is plastered with information about every one of us and I fear and my family certainly fears that these kinds of incidents are going to be repeated unless there is a very high priority placed on the safety of judges and their families."

Lefkow and her family were placed under the protection of the U.S. Marshals Service after the killings. Both her husband and mother were killed as the result of multiple gunshot wounds.

As Andersen went public with his concerns in 2005, other judges and attorneys were wondering about their own safety. Andersen said he wanted to go public with his concerns because Lefkow would want him to speak out.

Andersen he did "not believe that any person in government has done anything wrong" in connection with the slayings, but said the attorney general and the secretary of homeland security should take the lead in making any changes in the level of security for judges and their families.[3]

Notable cases

Donald Rumsfeld case

On March 5, 2010, Judge Andersen refused to dismiss a lawsuit alleging that former U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld allowed two security contractors under his supervision to engage in torture.

The judge ruled that there was enough probable cause to warrant a trial after evidence presented in the complaint alone was more than enough in the judge's opinion to move the case forward.

The case was first filed in 2006 after two men filed a lawsuit after they were tortured by American forces while working for the contractors named in the case[4].

Professional affiliations

  • Member of the Board of Directors of the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago
  • Member of the federal judges Association and the Illinois Judges Association
  • Member of the Chicago Bar Association and currently a member of its Board of Managers
  • Member of the Glenview Community Church (Affiliated With the United Church of Christ) 1997-Present
  • Past Member of the Board of Directors of Harvard Club of Chicago and currently an interviewer for the Harvard Club's Schools Committee interviewing high school students who apply to Harvard University[2]

External links


Federal judicial offices
Preceded by:
Stanley Roszkowski
Northern District of Illinois
Seat #8
Succeeded by:
Thomas M. Durkin

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