The Rapidian

Creston grad begins term on D.C.'s highest court

Corinne Beckwith was appointed by President Obama to a 15-year term on the Washington D.C. Court of Appeals.
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Friday, February 3, will be a big day for long-time Heritage Hill residents Larry and Nancy Beckwith and their family. They will be in Washington D.C. to witness and celebrate the investiture of Larry's daughter, Corinne Beckwith, as an Associate Judge for the D.C. Court of Appeals. Beckwith will be replacing Inez Smith Reid in a 15-year term on the District of Columbia’s highest court.

In nominating her, President Obama said that she “proved herself to be not only a first-rate legal mind but a faithful public servant” and that he has “full confidence in her ability, integrity, and independence.”

Known to friends and family as “Cori,” Corinne Beckwith grew up on the northeast side of Grand Rapids and graduated from Creston High School. She began a career in journalism following graduation from Kalamazoo College and the University of Illinois. Following two years as a reporter for the Midland Daily News, she applied to both the English Literature program and the Law School at the University of Michigan and was accepted in the latter, which radically changed the direction of her life.

Following law school, Beckwith clerked for U.S. Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens in Washington D.C. but returned to Michigan to work as an appellate attorney in Michigan’s State Appellate Defender Office. Eventually, she moved back to Washington D.C. to join the Public Defender Service's Appellate Division, where she built a reputation as a top-notch public defender and successfully argued before the U.S. Supreme Court in the 2003 Muhammad v. Close case.

Larry Beckwith says that Cori was sworn in immediately following her confirmation and is already busy hearing cases. But she’ll take a little time off for the investiture, a traditional installation ceremony for judges, and to celebrate with friends and family. Cori's father will be there to celebrate. “I’m really proud of Cori,” says Larry Beckwith of his daughter.


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