Obituaries

9th Circuit Judge Betty Fletcher Dies at 89


Betty Fletcher, a judge with the San Francisco-based 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, died Monday, the Associated Press reports.

Fletcher, 89, was appointed to the court by President Jimmy Carter, and has been on the bench since 1979. She graduated from University of Washington Law School in 1956, according to a 2009 Seattle Weekly profile of the jurist. Then 33, she had four young children and went to work at the firm that is now K&L Gates.

Two of her children, William and Susan, became lawyers, and William Fletcher is also now a 9th Circuit justice. Betty Fletcher is well-known for telling U.S. Senate Republicans, who according to the Associated Press delayed her son’s judicial appointment, that to ease his confirmation she would take senior status so they could appoint someone for her seat.

William Fletcher’s nomination was confirmed in 1998. Instead of retiring, the AP reports, Betty Fletcher continued to maintain an active caseload.

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