McKay and Durkan To Co-Chair WD Washington Judicial Selection Committee

On July 29, 2015, U.S. Senators Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell and U.S. Congressman Dave Reichert announced that they have formed a new judicial selection committee to select potential candidates for the seats on the United States District Court for the Western District of Washington.

The committee is comprised of three Democrats and three Republicans from Western Washington, who will be charged with advertising for the open position and screening potential candidates. The committee will then present three candidates to Murray and Cantwell, who will interview them and, if they are acceptable, recommend them to President Obama.  The President will make the final decision regarding selection of nominees and formal nomination.  The senators from Washington state will only support candidates who have been selected by this bipartisan committee.

Mike McKay

Mike McKay

NAFUSA Foundation President Mike McKay and Jenny Durkan, one of NAFUSA’s newest members, have been named co-chairs of the committee. McKay served as the U.S. Attorney for the WD of Washington, 1989-1993, and is also a past president of NAFUSA. Durkan served as U.S. Attorney in the WD of Washington, 2009-2014.

Jenny Durkan

Jenny Durkan

Brady Awarded Western Michigan’s Top Alumni Honor

Jim Brady

Jim Brady

Past NAFUSA president James S. Brady has been selected to receive the highest honor Western Michigan University can confer on its alumni–the Distinguished Alumni Award. Brady, office managing member of Dykema Grand Rapids is one of two 2015 award recipients. Established in 1963, the Distinguished Alumni Awards program honors and celebrates alumni who bring distinction to their alma mater through professional accomplishments and who have achieved a high level of success in their careers.

Brady earned a Bachelor of Science in political science from WMU in 1966. He joined Dykema Grand Rapids as office managing member in 2010 to lead the expansion of the firm’s regional presence and bolster its white collar defense practice. Dykema is a leading national law firm with 12 offices that focuses on handling a wide variety of business issues for Fortune 1,000 companies and institutions. After graduating from WMU, Brady immediately continued his education at Notre Dame, earning a Juris Doctor in 1969. Early in his legal career, he was appointed U.S. attorney for the Western Judicial District of Michigan by President Jimmy Carter.

He joined the Miller Johnson law firm in 1981 and was chair of its Criminal Law Group before accepting his current position at Dykema Grand Rapids. Then-governor James Blanchard appointed him to the WMU Board of Trustees in 1987, and Brady served with distinction through one of the University’s greatest periods of growth. He previously also served as a member of the WMU Foundation Board of Directors, holding such positions as the board’s chair as well as chair of its Committee on Directors. Listed in “Who’s Who in America,” Brady has received numerous accolades. He was honored by Michigan Lawyers Weekly when the publication included him in its 2009 class of Leaders in the Law. Additionally, he was recognized by Michigan Super Lawyers in the areas of criminal defense and civil litigation defense from 2006 through 2014 and has been recognized in “The Best Lawyers in America” editions in multiple practice areas from 2003 to 2015.

Tinder to Retire from 7th Circuit


NAFUSA member John Tinder has announced his retirement from the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals, effective in August. See “Tinder departs 7th Circuit” in The Indiana Lawyer, July 29, 2015. Judge Tinder served as the United States Attorney for the Southern District of Indiana, 1984-1987, and as a federal judge for 20 years on the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana before moving to the 7th Circuit eight years ago. He will leave the bench upon completion of his final opinions which are being circulated among panel judges. He is only 65 but hasn’t yet decided what is next in his impressive career. In the meantime he has registered to attend the Scottsdale conference in October.

Jeffrey Toobin To Speak in Scottsdale

NAFUSA President Matt Orwig has announced that Jeffrey Toobin will speak in Scottsdale on the state of the United States Supreme Court.


Jeffrey Toobin

Jeffrey Toobin, a staff writer for The New Yorker and senior analyst for CNN, is one of the most recognized and admired legal journalists in the country. His most recent book, The Oath: The Obama White House and the Supreme Court, was published by Doubleday in 2012 and was a New York Times best-seller. The Oath followed The Nine: Inside the Secret World of the Supreme Court, which was also a best-seller and earned the 2008 J. Anthony Lukas Prize for Nonfiction from the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism and the Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard University. He is currently at work on a book about the kidnapping of Patricia Hearst.

Toobin, who is also a noted lecturer, has written several other critically acclaimed, best-selling books including A Vast Conspiracy: The Real Story of the Sex Scandal that Nearly Brought Down a President; The Run of His Life: The People v. O.J. Simpson; and Too Close to Call: The 36-Day Battle to Decide the 2000 Election.

Previously, Toobin served as an assistant U.S. attorney in Brooklyn. He also served as an associate counsel in the Office of Independent Counsel Lawrence E. Walsh, an experience that provided the basis for his first book, Opening Arguments: A Young Lawyer’s First Case—United States v. Oliver North.

Toobin earned his bachelor’s degree from Harvard College and graduated magna cum laude from Harvard Law School where he was an editor of the Harvard Law Review.

Bob Miller Case to be Featured on the Discovery Channel

Bob Miller

NAFUSA Board Member Bob Miller, shown right, prosecuted a case in the 70s which involved serial murders (18 in all) committed across the United States by a nomadic family. Miller authored a book about the case (“Death Roads”- still available online). On August 4, 2015, Investigation Discovery will air a film about Miller’s case, entitled “Highway to Hell”. The family lived in a car traveling across the country robbing, kidnapping, raping and killing young women who worked in convenience stores.

Troy Eid Analyzes Federal Narcotics Laws v. Tribal Sovereignty


Troy Eid

In an article published yesterday in Law 360, NAFUSA member Troy Eid, shown left, discusses issues surrounding the recent federal criminal raids of marijuana production on the Alturas Indian Rancheria and the Pit River XL Ranch Reservation in Northeastern California which seized at least 12,000 marijuana plants and 100 pounds of processed marijuana.

Eid writes:

A high-profile criminal investigation of two marijuana cultivation facilities on Native American lands in California is a reminder that despite recent U.S. Department of Justice assurances of possible prosecutorial forbearance, tribes considering violating the federal drug laws-even for the sake of much-needed economic development-may do so at their peril.

Click here to read the entire article: Law360 – Federal Narcotics Laws Can Still Trump Tribal Sovereignty.

Troy Eid is the former U.S. Attorney for the District of Colorado and is a shareholder in Greenberg Traurig’s Denver office and co-chairman of he firm’s American Indian law practice group. He previously chaired the Indian Law and Order Commission and currently serves on the Tribal Issues Advisory Committee of the United States Sentencing Commission.