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Biden Nominates First Muslim Woman as Federal Judge

US President Joe Biden on Wednesday announced eight judicial nominees, including Nusrat Choudhury who would be the first Muslim woman to serve as a federal judge.

Choudhury, currently the legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Illinois, has been tipped to be a US judge in the Eastern District of New York.

“We welcome President Biden’s historic nomination of Nusrat Choudhury to serve as a federal district court judge. We urge the Senate Judiciary Committee to swiftly consider her nomination,” Edward Ahmed Mitchell, Esq., Deputy Director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), said in a statement.  

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“As an American Muslim civil rights attorney, Nusrat Chaudhury’s unique experience defending minority communities from discriminatory policies and national security abuses would broaden the prospective of the federal district court.  

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“We look forward to seeing more American Muslims serve at every level of government during President Biden’s tenure, including – as he pledged during his campaign – in the Cabinet.”  

Biden Nominates First Muslim Woman as Federal Judge - About Islam

Civil Liberties Fighter

According to the ACLU IL’s website, “prior to joining the ACLU of Illinois, Nusrat served as Deputy Director of the national ACLU Racial Justice Program, a staff attorney in the ACLU National Security Project, and a Marvin M. Karpatkin Fellow.”

“Nusrat Choudhury’s nomination to the federal bench is historic – as the first Bangladeshi American and first Muslim woman to serve on the federal bench and the second Muslim American,” ACLU wrote.

“During her tenure as legal director in Illinois, she has among other things led our legal team in efforts to improve policing in Chicago, protect medically-vulnerable persons detained on immigration charges during the COVID pandemic in Illinois county jails, and challenged unfair practices that drive Chicago residents into bankruptcy to pay fines and fees.”

By this appointment, Choudhury becomes the first American Muslim woman and Bangladeshi-American to serve as a federal judge. 

Choudhury is the second American Muslim to be nominated by the Biden administration to the position of a federal judge. In June, Zahid Quraishi was confirmed by the US Senate to serve as a judge for the US District Court for the District of New Jersey.  

The White House said that the nominees reflect Biden’s commitment to diversifying historically white, male-dominated positions.