Attorney who represented Mississippi abortion clinic nominated for federal bench

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Julie Rikelman served as an attorney or Jackson Women’s Health Organization in the Dobbs v. Jackson case, which led to Roe v. Wade being overturned. She's been nominated to serve on a federal appeals court based in Boston. Andrew Harnik / AP Photo

A lawyer who represented a women’s health care clinic from Jackson, Mississippi, in the landmark overturn of the national abortion law could wind up sitting on a federal bench.

President Joe Biden said Friday that Julie Rikelman of New York City has been nominated as a candidate for the 1st U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Boston. This court hears cases involving Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Puerto Rico.

The move comes just over a month following the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, which since 1973 had prevented states from banning the practice of abortions.

Rikelman served as an attorney for Jackson Women’s Health Organization in the Dobbs v. Jackson case, which led to Roe v. Wade being overturned.

The veteran attorney is the United States litigation director for the Center for Reproductive rights. She has served in that position since 2011. Previously, Rikelman worked at NBC Universal, where she held multiple positions, including vice president of Litigation.

Prior to working at NBC Universal, Rikelman worked at Simpson Thacher & Bartlett in New York as a senior associate from 2004-06, and worked in Anchorage, Alaska, from 2001-04 as an associate at Feldman & Orlansky.

Rikelman is a 1997 graduate of Harvard Law School, graduating cum laude. She was born in Kiev, Ukraine, and emigrated in 1979 with her family to the United States.

Republished with the permission of The Center Square.