AFJ Letter of Support for Richard Federico

Support Letter


The Honorable Richard Durbin 
Senate Judiciary Committee 

Dear Chairman Durbin: 

On behalf of the Alliance for Justice (AFJ), a national association representing over 150 public interest and civil rights organizations, I write to support the confirmation of Richard Federico to the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit. 

Mr. Federico’s extensive litigation experience, his commitment to serving the public, and distinguished military career make him an excellent choice for the Tenth Circuit. Mr. Federico earned his B.A. from Indiana University and his J.D. from the University of Kansas School of Law. 

Mr. Federico’s military service and trial experience will enable him to make unique and substantial contributions on the Tenth Circuit. Over the course of his military career, he served as a U.S. Navy JAG Officer for the U.S. Region Legal Service Office, Europe & Southwest Asia; in the Office of the Chief Defense Counsel; in the Office of Military Commissions; and in the Navy Legal Service Office Southeast. He tried dozens of cases in these roles at both trial and appellate levels. In 2019, Mr. Federico was designated and certified by the Judge Advocate General of the Navy as a Military Judge. 

Upon leaving active duty, Mr. Federico continued his public service at the Office of the Federal Public Defender for the District of Oregon in Portland. There, Mr. Federico took on several notably complex cases, including a multidefendant case springing from the militia occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge. In 2018, Mr. Federico was named Assistant Federal Public Defender for the District of Kansas. In this role, as a senior litigator, he represented indigent persons charged with federal crimes, including on appeal. Mr. Federico has filed one appeal before the Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit and consulted on others. 

Mr. Federico has distinguished himself in both the military and the civilian justice systems by assuming leadership positions as well as supervising, training, and mentoring other lawyers and legal professionals. As a senior officer in the Navy, he has provided training on substantive legal issues and trial advocacy, supervised lawyers completing required qualifications, and taken part in case strategy discussions at both the trial and appellate level. 

Mr. Federico has also received numerous military awards and medals. In 2019, he earned the Rear Admiral Hugh H. Howell, Jr. Award of Excellence for outstanding contributions to the Naval Reserve Law Program. In 2007, he was also awarded Junior Officer of the Year, U.S. Region Legal Service Office, Europe & Southwest Asia. Additionally, the Defense Department honored him with the Defense Meritorious Service Medal (2012), the Meritorious Service Medal (2015), the National Defense Service Medal (2003), the Global War on Terror Expeditionary Medal (2010), the Global War on Terror Service Medal (2004) and the Overseas Service Ribbon (2006). He also received the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal four times (2021, 2019, 2008, 2005) and the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal (2006). 

Mr. Federico will bring valuable litigation experience and professional diversity to the federal bench. Given his exemplary legal talent and qualifications, the Senate should expeditiously confirm Mr. Federico to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit. 


Rakim Brooks