On Nov. 1, President Joe Biden nominated the Honorable Jacquelyn D. Austin ‘96 to the United States District Court for the District of South Carolina. This seat was left vacant following Judge J. Michelle Childs’ ‘91 confirmation in 2022 to the U.S. Court of Appeals, District of Columbia Circuit.
This makes Judge Austin the third Black South Carolina Law alumnae in the last two years nominated for a federal judgeship. She joins Judge Childs and Judge DeAndrea Benjamin ‘97, who was recently confirmed to the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.
Of the 13 judges currently serving in the District of South Carolina, 11 are South Carolina Law graduates.
A Sumter native, Judge Austin worked in private practice at Womble Carlyle Sandridge and Rice, PLLC as an associate from 1999 to 2006, and as a partner starting in 2006. She was appointed to her first eight-year term as a United States magistrate judge for the District of South Carolina in 2011 and was reappointed in 2019. Prior to that, she worked as an associate at Hardaway Law Firm from 1997 to 1999. From 1996 to 1997 she served as a law clerk for The Honorable Matthew J. Perry, Jr. of the United States District Court for the District of South Carolina.