NEW YORK, Sept. 21, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Judge Charles R. Breyer of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California was notified early this morning with a personal call from Justice Anthony M. Kennedy that he will be the recipient of the prestigious 34th Annual Devitt Award, our nation's highest honor bestowed upon a Article III federal judge. The ceremony and celebration will take place on November 7, 2018 at the Supreme Court of the United States in the presence of the Supreme Court Justices and 100 invited guests. As brother of Justice Stephen Breyer, this is the first time that a relation of any Justice of the Supreme Court will receive the Devitt.
Justice Kennedy chaired this year's selection committee which included Judge Raymond Kethledge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit and Judge Lucy Koh of the United States District Court for the Northern District of California. The committee deliberated over two days in New York City along with the award sponsor, the Dwight D. Opperman Foundation executives.
"I am grateful to Justice Kennedy and the esteemed judges who reviewed an unprecedented number of highly impressive and fiercely dedicated nominees from all across the country," Julie C. Opperman said, the Foundation chairman.
"The committee and I are fascinated and inspired by the integrity, the commitment and the dedication of federal judges throughout the country," Devitt Committee Chairman, Justice Kennedy stated. "The committee noted that in addition to his nationwide reputation as being a skilled and fine trial judge, he has contributed to the judiciary in many ways including being on the panel for multi-district litigation and on the United States Sentencing Commission. Most important of all is the great respect that Judge Breyer enjoys among his own colleagues, members of the bar and the community at large. He honors us all by his continued commitment to the Rule of Law and the Constitution that it sustains."
Judge Breyer said in response, "I am honored to accept the Devitt Award." He added, "Even more so, I feel very privileged to have worked with so many selfless and dedicated colleagues over the past two decades. Their work in promoting the Rule of Law is the true award."
"Judge Breyer's exemplary record of service illustrates well the prestigious nature of the Devitt Award," said Judge Raymond Kethledge. Judge Lucy Koh continued, "He generously shares his time and wisdom with lawyers and judges in need of guidance. Judge Breyer volunteers to take extra cases to help his colleagues as well as assisting other districts in need."
After attending college at Harvard and law school at Berkley, Judge Breyer entered public service, joining the Army Reserve and working as a line prosecutor in the San Francisco attorney's office. In 1973 he joined the Watergate Special Prosecution Force in Washington and then returned to San Francisco where he went into private practice. In 1998, he was appointed as a district judge in the Northern District of California.
SOURCE The Dwight D. Opperman Foundation