President Obama appointed Judge Lucy Koh to the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California in June 2010. Governor Schwarzenegger appointed her to the California Superior Court for the County of Santa Clara in January 2008. She was formerly a partner at McDermott Will & Emery, where her colleagues and she litigated the In re Seagate Technology case, in which the Federal Circuit overturned the 24 year old standard for willful patent infringement. She also served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Major Frauds Section of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Los Angeles. A jury instruction from one of her trials is a Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals Model Criminal Jury instruction. She received an award from then FBI Director Louis J. Freeh for prosecuting a major securities fraud case. She also served in Washington, D.C. as a Special Assistant to U.S. Deputy Attorney General Jamie Gorelick at the U.S. Department of Justice and as a Women's Law and Public Policy Fellow on U.S. Senator Ted Kennedy's Senate Judiciary Committee staff. She received her undergraduate and law degrees from Harvard. She is the first Korean American woman federal judge.
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