Best and worst judges to clerk for

Seek and share information about clerkship applications, clerkship hiring timelines, and post-clerkship employment opportunities.
Forum rules
Anonymous Posting

Anonymous posting is only appropriate when you are sharing sensitive information about clerkship applications and clerkship hiring. You may anonymously respond on topic to these threads. Unacceptable uses include: harassing another user, joking around, testing the feature, or other things that are more appropriate in the lounge.

Failure to follow these rules will get you outed, warned, or banned."
Anonymous User
Posts: 310221
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Best and worst judges to clerk for

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jan 18, 2018 5:02 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Have heard rumors that judge clay in the sixth circuit is incredibly difficult to work for but can't confirm. Anyone have any insight?


I actually don't know about that, but the year I was there he was pretty unpredictable administratively in terms of panels. For example, while many judges don't share bench memos, he was all over the place. Sometimes we would get them, sometimes not, and in both instances his chambers would communicate the exact opposite. May have no bearing on him as a boss but it struck me as a sign of a mercurial judge, particularly when his clerks or JA wouldn't know what his policies would be.

Anonymous User
Posts: 310221
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Best and worst judges to clerk for

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Jan 20, 2018 9:53 am

Anonymous User wrote: Have heard that Srinivasan works clerks very hard. (Kozinski level time commitment.)


Srinivasan clerks work hard, but not Kozinski levels. (If they do, that's on them.)

Anonymous User
Posts: 310221
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Best and worst judges to clerk for

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Jan 20, 2018 11:10 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Colloton on the 8th is laid-back; clerks are known to travel out of Iowa on weekends.

One of my friends clerked for Colloton and they said he was decidedly *not* laid-back.

Heard this too. Is traveling out of state unusual in a clerkship? If so I am insanely lucky.

Anonymous User
Posts: 310221
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Best and worst judges to clerk for

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Jan 22, 2018 6:05 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Colloton on the 8th is laid-back; clerks are known to travel out of Iowa on weekends.

One of my friends clerked for Colloton and they said he was decidedly *not* laid-back.

Heard this too. Is traveling out of state unusual in a clerkship? If so I am insanely lucky.

Yeah, I clerked for another judge on the 8th Circuit, and the Colloton clerks were easily the most overworked in the circuit, regularly working late nights and weekends. No idea what original anon is talking about.

Anonymous User
Posts: 310221
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Best and worst judges to clerk for

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Jan 22, 2018 6:11 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Colloton on the 8th is laid-back; clerks are known to travel out of Iowa on weekends.

One of my friends clerked for Colloton and they said he was decidedly *not* laid-back.

Heard this too. Is traveling out of state unusual in a clerkship? If so I am insanely lucky.

Yeah, I clerked for another judge on the 8th Circuit, and the Colloton clerks were easily the most overworked in the circuit, regularly working late nights and weekends. No idea what original anon is talking about.


Original anon. Came from interviews with clerks. Your info seems, of course, much more reliable. (serious).

Anonymous User
Posts: 310221
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Best and worst judges to clerk for

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jan 23, 2018 12:18 am

That's lame if the clerks misled you. I clerked for a judge who some would call intense work-wise and we always told the clerk candidates (I didn't find him/her intense but I could see why some would). Why would you want someone to accept not knowing what they're getting irk ?

Anonymous User
Posts: 310221
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Best and worst judges to clerk for

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jan 23, 2018 4:01 pm

My only experience is with the 9th Cir, and my understanding is that Fletcher and Paez are both wonderful bosses.

Anonymous User
Posts: 310221
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Best and worst judges to clerk for

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jan 23, 2018 4:43 pm

Have heard this too about Fletcher and Paez. Other 9th circuit gossip/innuendo:

--My friend who clerked for Bea said that he is demanding and formal, but generally a good boss and mentor.
--I have heard from multiple people that Thomas is an amazing, wonderful boss and have never heard any of his clerks say a negative thing about him.
--Bybee is supposed to be great to clerk for as well.
--Ikuta is supposedly very demanding hours-wise, but her clerks like her a lot.
--I have heard from multiple people that Berzon is incredibly difficult and that her clerks are extremely unhappy/overworked.
--Callahan is apparently pretty formal and strict on face time. I understand that she has an older career clerk who is in charge of the administrative side and have heard that this person is supposed to be pretty difficult to work with.

Anonymous User
Posts: 310221
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Best and worst judges to clerk for

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jan 23, 2018 5:17 pm

Totally anecdotal rough ranking of a sample of SDNY judges from bad to better based on my second-hand experience clerking for a judge on that court:
- Berman is incredibly demanding and fires a clerk about every other year. Probably worst clerkship in SDNY.
- Woods demands BigLaw hours or worse.
- Forrest, Nathan and Caproni aren't far behind. Sometimes it's like they and Woods have a 4-way competition. They all seek out cases where they can make precedent, rarely refer discovery disputes to magistrates, set strict deadlines for work product, etc. They seem nicer than Woods, though, but maybe that's just reverse misogyny speaking.
- Swain is a slavedriver.
- Koeltl's chambers also have pretty bad hours. He's kind of mercurial but otherwise seems okay to work for.
- Rakoff is a busy clerkship, but then you're likely in for a pretty easy year with Katzmann.
- Hellerstein is a pretty chill clerkship, but he has fired at least one clerk in the past few years.
- Daniels is really nice but takes forever to decide stuff.
- McMahon is very relaxed.
- Crotty, Kaplan, Marrero are all pretty chill chambers and are great to work for.

Anonymous User
Posts: 310221
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Best and worst judges to clerk for

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jan 23, 2018 5:35 pm

How about Schofield?

Anonymous User
Posts: 310221
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Best and worst judges to clerk for

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jan 23, 2018 6:15 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Totally anecdotal rough ranking of a sample of SDNY judges from bad to better based on my second-hand experience clerking for a judge on that court:
- Berman is incredibly demanding and fires a clerk about every other year. Probably worst clerkship in SDNY.
- Woods demands BigLaw hours or worse.
- Forrest, Nathan and Caproni aren't far behind. Sometimes it's like they and Woods have a 4-way competition. They all seek out cases where they can make precedent, rarely refer discovery disputes to magistrates, set strict deadlines for work product, etc. They seem nicer than Woods, though, but maybe that's just reverse misogyny speaking.
- Swain is a slavedriver.
- Koeltl's chambers also have pretty bad hours. He's kind of mercurial but otherwise seems okay to work for.
- Rakoff is a busy clerkship, but then you're likely in for a pretty easy year with Katzmann.
- Hellerstein is a pretty chill clerkship, but he has fired at least one clerk in the past few years.
- Daniels is really nice but takes forever to decide stuff.
- McMahon is very relaxed.
- Crotty, Kaplan, Marrero are all pretty chill chambers and are great to work for.


Can confirm re: Koetl. 10-10 every day (at least during year I was there). Allows for clerks to not come in whenever he doesn't but gives absolutely no notice as to when that will be so it serves only as a reprieve, not a chance to see friends/family. (Not chastising this, how many judges are)
Last edited by Anonymous User on Tue Jan 23, 2018 6:32 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Anonymous User
Posts: 310221
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Best and worst judges to clerk for

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jan 23, 2018 6:31 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Have heard this too about Fletcher and Paez. Other 9th circuit gossip/innuendo:

--My friend who clerked for Bea said that he is demanding and formal, but generally a good boss and mentor.
--I have heard from multiple people that Thomas is an amazing, wonderful boss and have never heard any of his clerks say a negative thing about him.
--Bybee is supposed to be great to clerk for as well.
--Ikuta is supposedly very demanding hours-wise, but her clerks like her a lot.
--I have heard from multiple people that Berzon is incredibly difficult and that her clerks are extremely unhappy/overworked.
--Callahan is apparently pretty formal and strict on face time. I understand that she has an older career clerk who is in charge of the administrative side and have heard that this person is supposed to be pretty difficult to work with.


Adding Murguia; extremely long and/or strange hours (when I was clerking she came in at like 2-3pm and stayed until 10-11pm and clerks must be there as well (meetings happen during that time). I have not heard former clerks badmouth her or the experience but have yet to hear a glowing account either, which usually signals *something*. Was also told that she is not the kind of "make sure her clerks get a better job than they could have before" but that she will sign clerk-drafted LOR letters, including to scotus. Just some tidbits.

Anonymous User
Posts: 310221
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Best and worst judges to clerk for

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 24, 2018 12:52 am

Any word on Roman, Carter, or Oetken in SDNY?

Anonymous User
Posts: 310221
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Best and worst judges to clerk for

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 24, 2018 2:57 am

Does anyone have the inside scoop on 11th Circuit judges?

Anonymous User
Posts: 310221
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Best and worst judges to clerk for

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 24, 2018 3:13 am

Anonymous User wrote:Have heard this too about Fletcher and Paez. Other 9th circuit gossip/innuendo:

--My friend who clerked for Bea said that he is demanding and formal, but generally a good boss and mentor.
--I have heard from multiple people that Thomas is an amazing, wonderful boss and have never heard any of his clerks say a negative thing about him.
--Bybee is supposed to be great to clerk for as well.
--Ikuta is supposedly very demanding hours-wise, but her clerks like her a lot.
--I have heard from multiple people that Berzon is incredibly difficult and that her clerks are extremely unhappy/overworked.
--Callahan is apparently pretty formal and strict on face time. I understand that she has an older career clerk who is in charge of the administrative side and have heard that this person is supposed to be pretty difficult to work with.


Seconded.

Anonymous User
Posts: 310221
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Best and worst judges to clerk for

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 24, 2018 9:35 am

Anyone have any information about DDC or CADC judges?

Anonymous User
Posts: 310221
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Best and worst judges to clerk for

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 24, 2018 9:42 am

Anonymous User wrote:Any word on Roman, Carter, or Oetken in SDNY?

And Ramos?

Anonymous User
Posts: 310221
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Best and worst judges to clerk for

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 24, 2018 12:01 pm

I’ve heard from many people that Wardlaw is extremely unpleasant.

Anonymous User
Posts: 310221
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Best and worst judges to clerk for

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 24, 2018 12:13 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Does anyone have the inside scoop on 11th Circuit judges?


And/or any info on the district court judges there?

Anonymous User
Posts: 310221
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Best and worst judges to clerk for

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 24, 2018 1:18 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Anyone have any information about DDC or CADC judges?


Rogers (DC Cir) is very nice and by all accounts an involved mentor to current and former clerks. Chambers are on the formal side, but clerks seem to work humane hours.

Anonymous User
Posts: 310221
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Best and worst judges to clerk for

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 24, 2018 1:24 pm

Any thoughts on Third Circuit judges?

Anonymous User
Posts: 310221
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Best and worst judges to clerk for

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 24, 2018 1:28 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Have heard this too about Fletcher and Paez. Other 9th circuit gossip/innuendo:

--My friend who clerked for Bea said that he is demanding and formal, but generally a good boss and mentor.
--I have heard from multiple people that Thomas is an amazing, wonderful boss and have never heard any of his clerks say a negative thing about him.
--Bybee is supposed to be great to clerk for as well.
--Ikuta is supposedly very demanding hours-wise, but her clerks like her a lot.
--I have heard from multiple people that Berzon is incredibly difficult and that her clerks are extremely unhappy/overworked.
--Callahan is apparently pretty formal and strict on face time. I understand that she has an older career clerk who is in charge of the administrative side and have heard that this person is supposed to be pretty difficult to work with.


Adding Murguia; extremely long and/or strange hours (when I was clerking she came in at like 2-3pm and stayed until 10-11pm and clerks must be there as well (meetings happen during that time). I have not heard former clerks badmouth her or the experience but have yet to hear a glowing account either, which usually signals *something*. Was also told that she is not the kind of "make sure her clerks get a better job than they could have before" but that she will sign clerk-drafted LOR letters, including to scotus. Just some tidbits.


I have heard good things from a few people about Judge Smith (the one in CA, not Idaho). Clerks seem to work very reasonable hours.

Anonymous User
Posts: 310221
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Best and worst judges to clerk for

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 24, 2018 1:50 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Any thoughts on Third Circuit judges?


Hardiman is excellent to work for. Clerks seem to love him. Jordan is very nice, and is committed to a collegial chambers. Clerks can leave at 5 on the dot, and finish any remaining work from home.

Anonymous User
Posts: 310221
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Best and worst judges to clerk for

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 24, 2018 10:14 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I’ve heard from many people that Wardlaw is extremely unpleasant.


I've heard this as well. There is a prevalent rumor in LA that Clinton appointed her to the 9th Circuit because she was a disaster of a district court judge and she would do less damage as an appellate judge.

I've heard mixed things on M. Smith - some people think he's kind of a prick, but some people really like him, and his clerks do seem to work relatively humane hours. You have to work in El Segundo, though.

lavarman84

Platinum
Posts: 7647
Joined: Thu May 28, 2015 5:01 pm

Re: Best and worst judges to clerk for

Postby lavarman84 » Wed Jan 24, 2018 10:23 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I’ve heard from many people that Wardlaw is extremely unpleasant.


I've heard this as well. There is a prevalent rumor in LA that Clinton appointed her to the 9th Circuit because she was a disaster of a district court judge and she would do less damage as an appellate judge.

I've heard mixed things on M. Smith - some people think he's kind of a prick, but some people really like him, and his clerks do seem to work relatively humane hours. You have to work in El Segundo, though.


Well, they took a loss there because she was replaced by Percy Anderson.



Return to “Judicial Clerkships?

Who is online

The online users are hidden on this forum.