US Supreme Court Associate Justice Neil Gorsuch was born in Denver in 1967. He received a BA from Columbia University, a JD from Harvard Law, and a Doctor of Philosophy from Oxford. He served as a clerk to Judge David Sentelle of the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, and as a clerk to Justices Byron White and Anthony Kennedy of the Supreme Court. From 1995–2005, he was in private practice, and from 2005–2006 he was Principal Deputy Associate Attorney General at the US Department of Justice. He was appointed to the US Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit in 2006. He served on the Standing Committee on Rules for Practice and Procedure of the US Judicial Conference, and as Chairman of the Advisory Committee on Rules of Appellate Procedure. He taught at University of Colorado Law. Republican President Trump nominated him as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court, and he took his seat in April of 2017.
Gorsuch’s nomination process engendered a fair amount of controversy, as Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell had refused to allow Barack Obama’s nomination of Merrick Garland to replace the deceased Antonin Scalia to proceed during the election year of 2016. McConnell claimed a desire to allow the American voters to consider an upcoming Supreme Court nomination to replace Scalia as a factor in choosing their next President (McConnell later engaged in hypocrisy when he refused to rule out allowing a hypothetical 2020 election year nomination by Republican President Trump to proceed, saying, “We’d fill it.”).