Alexander Praises Nomination of Judge John Thomas Fowlkes, Jr., of Memphis, to Be U.S. District Judge for the Western District of Tennessee

Posted on March 15, 2012

WASHINGTON – At a hearing of the Senate Judiciary Committee yesterday, U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) introduced Judge John Thomas Fowlkes, Jr., of Memphis, nominated to be United States District Judge for the Western District of Tennessee, calling him “an excellent nominee.”

Alexander said in his introduction of Judge Fowlkes:

“It’s a real honor to introduce Judge John Fowlkes, who’s sitting over here on the right, he’s a state judge in Memphis, the President’s nominated him to fill a vacant seat for the United States History judgeship for the Western district of Tennessee and the President has made an excellent nomination.

“As governor of Tennessee I appointed about 50 judges and as I look back on it I find out that they’ve lasted a lot longer than most of the things I tried to do when I was governor. So one has to appoint judges carefully, and I tried not to inquire too far into their views on things, but really into their intellect, their character, their demeanor, their capacity for fairness and especially the respect they would have for the litigants and the lawyers who appear before them.

“By that test Judge Fowlkes passes with flying colors. He’s already a judge, he’s well known in Shelby County and in Memphis, Tennessee, and he’s deeply involved in his community. I’ve received a number of letters from citizens of Memphis and Shelby County talking about his ‘creative mind and independent work ethic.’

“I knew his reputation but I took the time after the president nominated to study his qualifications further and to meet personally with him and I’m impressed. He devotes 50 hours a year of service to the Board of Memphis Area Legal Services, he’s active in support of the Boy Scouts, he’s devoted himself to the community in which he lives. I’m sure the committee will carefully examine his judicial qualifications, but from my vantage point his reputation is excellent, he’s served well as a judge for our state, he’s well respected in his community, and I would recommend that the committee approve him and move him on to the Senate for full consideration.

“I also should note, I’ll let him do the introducing, he has pretty good family support. He’s got a wife, father, two sisters, a niece, two cousins, and a nephew all here today and I imagine he’ll want to introduce them when the time comes.”


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