Before being nominated, Scalia was a judge on the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia from 1982 to 1986. Undergraduate education: Harvard University, degree in mathematics. Undergraduate education: College of the Holy Cross, degree in English literature, Source: Supreme Court of the United States, Business Insider. is a vacancy on the court, it is the job of the President to nominate a suitable candidate. How do you become a Supreme Court justice? Undergraduate education: University of Chicago, degree in English. Additionally, the chief justice does not necessarily have to been an associate justice. Before being nominated as an associate justice by Ronald Reagan, Rehnquist was assistant attorney general for the Justice Department from 1969 to 1971. For instance, Chief Supreme Justice John Roberts clerked for Judge Henry Friendly and former Chief Justice William Rehnquist when the latter was an associate justice. How Long Do Supreme Court Justices Serve? Who Appoints and Approves Supreme Court Justices? Look for summer or after-school opportunities involving the law. According to The Supreme Court Justice site, James F. Byrnes, who served on the Supreme Court from 1941 to 1942, was the "last justice to be appointed who did not attend any law school." When she was appointed to the high court in 2009, she became the first Latina Supreme Court Justice. Undergraduate education: Stanford University, degree in political science. Before being nominated, Alito worked for about three years as a US attorney for the District of New Jersey and was a judge on the US Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/video/supreme-court-justice-37750026 There has been a debate over whether President Donald Trump should fill the vacant seat with the election only a few weeks away. Undergraduate education: Harvard University, degree in philosophy. Visit the Supreme Court to see in action the work done by an attorney or justice. Before being nominated by Richard Nixon, Powell was chairman of the Virginia Board of Education from 1968 to 1969 and served on the board from 1961 to 1969. Before being nominated, Gorsuch was a judge on the US Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit from 2006 to 2017. Step 1: The presidential pick The first thing to know is that the Constitution of the United States gives the power of nomination to the president. No age, education, job experience, or citizenship rules exist. Although there are no set requirements for appointment to the nation's highest court, there are clear educational and career patterns among recent justices. At school join a mock trial team, debate team, run for school office, become a peer leader, and take part in other clubs and activities to develop leadership, communication, and ethical skills. Stevens was a clerk for Supreme Court Justice Wiley Rutledge before working at a law firm. Some served as clerks to other judges after law school, and many were judges on circuit courts before being nominated to serve on the Supreme Court. Kavanaugh was a clerk for Judge Walter Stapleton of the US Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit from 1990 to 1991 and for Judge Alex Kozinski of the Ninth Circuit from 1991 to 1992. However, since the Senate confirms justices, experience and background have become important factors in the confirmations, and conventions have been developed and largely followed since the first selection of the court during the first president's term of office. For instance, Brown v. Board of Education formally banned racial segregation in schools, Roe v. Wade case was a landmark decision securing abortion rights, and Phillips v. Martin Marietta Corp. found companies cannot discriminate from hiring mothers of pre-school-age children. Bush, Thomas was a judge on the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit from March 1990 to October 1991. If a simple majority approves the choice, then there is a new Supreme Court Justice She was also the first woman professor at Columbia Law School to earn tenure. In fact, according to the Constitution, a Supreme Court justice does not need to even have a law degree. Additionally, he worked at a private practice in Phoenix, Arizona, for 16 years. Ginsberg served as a clerk for Judge Edmund Palmieri of the US District Court for the Southern District of New York. Many recent justices served on the US Court of Appeals prior to being appointed. Before being nominated by George H.W. Undergraduate education: Georgetown University, degree in history. Support and advocacy of the U.S. Constitution, Distinguished service in the American Revolution, Active participation in the political life of a particular state or the nation as a whole, Prior judicial experience on lower tribunals, Either a "favorable reputation with his fellows" or personally known to Washington himself, Geographic suitability—the original Supreme Court were circuit riders, The ability to think and write logically and lucidly, Ability to handle judicial power sensibly, Balancing "representation" or "representativeness" on the court (by region, race, gender, religion). Have a Law degree something through recommended links in this Article is the of. The vacant seat with the election only a few weeks away Step 1 ] to a... On the United States Court of Appeals for how to become a supreme court justice first woman solicitor general and held position! Citizenship rules exist in practice it is the job of the United States Court of for! 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