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William K. Sessions

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This page is about the federal judge for the District of Vermont. If you are looking for information on the federal judge for the Western District of Texas, please see William Steele Sessions.

William K. Sessions
Current Court Information:
United States District Court for the District of Vermont
Title:   Judge
Position:   Seat #2
Appointed by:   Bill Clinton
Active:   08/11/1995-6/15/2014
Chief:   2002-2010
Senior:   6/15/2014-Present
Preceded by:   Fred Parker
Succeeded by:   Geoffrey Crawford
Personal History
Born:   1947
Hometown:   Hartford, CT
Undergraduate:   Middlebury College, 1969
Law School:   George Washington U. Law, 1972
Military service:   U.S. Army, 1972-1977

William K. Sessions III is a federal judge on senior status for the United States District Court for the District of Vermont. He was nominated by President Bill Clinton on the recommendation U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy, receiving his commission in 1995. Between 2002 and 2010, Judge Session served as the Chief Judge of the District of Vermont. Prior to his judicial appointment, Session worked as both an Adjunct professor at the Vermont Law School from 1978 to 1995, and as Campaign Manager for Senator Lehay's U.S. Senate Campaign in 1992.[1] Sessions assumed senior status on June 15, 2014, after 19 years on the bench.

Early life and education

Born 1947 in Hartford, Connecticut, Sessions graduated from Middlebury College with his bachelor's degree in 1969 and received a Juris Doctor degree from the George Washington University Law School in 1972.[1]

Professional career

Sessions started his career as a law clerk for District Judge Hilton Dier in the Addison County, Vermont State District Court in 1973, before serving as an Addison County Public Defender from 1974 to 1978. Between 1978 and 1995, Sessions worked in private practice in the State of Vermont. During that time, he also taught as an Adjunct Profession at the Vermont Law School. In 1992, Patrick Leahy tapped Session as the Campaign Manager for the "Patrick Leahy for U.S. Senate" Campaign in 1992.[1] Sessions has served as a Commissioner on the United States Sentencing Commission since 1999.[2]

Military service

Between 1972 and 1973, Sessions served on active duty as a First Lieutenant in the United States Army. He transfered to reserve status in 1974, where he remained until 1977.[1]

Judicial career

District of Vermont

On the recommendation of U.S. Senator Patrick Lehay, Sessions was nominated to the United States District Court for the District of Vermont by President Bill Clinton on June 30, 1995, to a seat vacated by Fred Parker as Parker was appointed to serve on the Second Circuit Court of Appeals. Sessions was confirmed by the Senate on August 11, 1995, on a voice vote and received commission on August 14, 1995.[3] Judge Sessions served as Chief Judge of the District of Vermont between 2002 and 2010.[1]

Sessions was the chair of the United States Sentencing Commission, a position to which he was nominated by President Obama. He was confirmed to the post on October 21, 2009. Sessions served as vice-chair of the commission from 1999, when he was nominated by President Clinton, and 2003 when he was re-appointed by President Bush.[4]

Notable cases

Alleged Green Mountain Coffee accounting fraud (2010)

     United States District Court for the District of Vermont ((dead link) Horowitz v. Green Mountain Coffee Roasters Inc. et al, 2:10-cv-00227-wks)

In 2010, a class action lawsuit was filed alleging that Green Mountain Coffee Inc. mislead shareholders through accounting fraud. The suit was filed by shareholders after the company announced that it was being investigated by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for a $9 million difference in its accounting numbers from 2006 through 2010. The company maintained that the difference constituted a series of small errors and not direct malpractice on their part. In January of 2012, Sessions dismissed the suit noting that the evidence presented did not provide "a strong inference" of fraud.[5]

The litigants had 30 days to revise and resubmit their claim with better justification. They were granted an extension to resubmit on February 24, 2012. The litigants resubmitted their case, but in March of 2013, Sessions dismissed the lawsuit with prejudice, meaning that the case cannot be brought before the court again. In his ruling, Sessions added, "[p]laintiffs still have not alleged facts demonstrating that any of the individuals responsible for releasing the company's (quarterly) statements were confronted with information that should have made the company aware of their material falsity."[6][7]

See also

External links


Federal judicial offices
Preceded by:
Fred Parker
District of Vermont
Succeeded by:
Geoffrey Crawford

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