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Judge Richard Allen Griffin

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit

Confirmed June 9, 2005

  • Judge Richard Griffin is eminently well-qualified to be a judge on the Sixth Circuit, having served with distinction as a state court judge for well over a decade.
    • Judge Griffin was elected to the Michigan Court of Appeals (Third District) in 1988 and reelected to the Court of Appeals in 1996 (Fourth District).
    • As an appellate judge, he has heard civil and criminal matters from across the State of Michigan and has authored over 280 published opinions and several hundred unpublished opinions.
    • The American Bar Association rated Judge Griffin "Well Qualified" to sit on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.
  • The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, which has 16 authorized seats, has 4 vacancies. President Bush has nominated 4 highly qualified individuals from Michigan to fill these vacancies.
    • The seat to which Judge Griffin has been nominated has been deemed a judicial emergency.
  • Judge Griffin had a distinguished career as a practicing attorney before serving on the state bench.
    • Judge Griffin was a founding partner of Read & Griffin, a firm established in 1985. As a private lawyer, Griffin practiced in the federal district courts in Michigan and before the Sixth Circuit. Prior to founding his own firm, Griffin was a partner with the Traverse City firm of Coulter, Cunningham, Davison & Read, which he had joined as an associate in 1977.
    • Judge Griffin received his J.D. from the University of Michigan Law School in 1977 and his bachelor’s degree, magna cum laude, from the Western Michigan University Honors College in 1973.
  • Judge Griffin was born in Traverse City and is a life-long resident of Michigan. He would be the first appointee to the Sixth Circuit from the Traverse City area of Michigan.
  • Judge Griffin has served his state and local community in many voluntary capacities.
    • Judge Griffin has served as Chief Judge of the YMCA Youth-in-Government Mock Trial program.
    • Judge Griffin is a past chairman of the Yellow Ribbon committee welcoming troops home from Desert Storm, past chairman of the Long Lake Township Building Authority, and a former ambassador to the National Cherry Festival.


President Gerald R. Ford

"I write to strongly support the nomination of Richard Allen Griffin to the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. He is a highly qualified nominee by President Bush for this important federal judicial post. His approval by the Senate will alleviate the current judicial emergency in the 6th Circuit . . . . I can say with conviction that Judge Griffin is a person of highest quality character. As the record shows, he has been a very excellent Judge with unquestioned integrity." Excerpt from letter to Senator Patrick Leahy, Chairman, Senate Judiciary Committee, Senator Carl Levin and Senator Debbie Stabenow from the Honorable Gerald R. Ford, 38th President of the United States, August 13, 2002.

Justice Maura D. Corrigan, Michigan Supreme Court

"Richard Allen Griffin is a man of integrity and probity who is fully capable of discharging the duty of protecting our Constitution and laws. He is deserving of the public trust as he has already proven himself worthy of that trust during his years of service to the State of Michigan. I have every confidence that he will serve our country with honor and distinction." Excerpt from letter to Senator Carl Levin and Senator Debbie Stabenow, July 5, 2002.

The Honorable Roman S. Gribbs, Former Mayor City of Detroit and Retired Judge, Michigan Court of Appeals

"I have known Judge Griffin for many years and have worked with him as a colleague on the Michigan Court of Appeals for 14 years. . . . Working together on hundreds of opinions has given me the opportunity to observe and know Rick very well. He is in many respects a ‘judge’s judge’: integrity personified, intelligent, hardworking, fair, sensitive with level temperament and good judgment plus the uncanny ability to decide and write in a clear and understandable manner that resolves complex and obscure issues. He is a dedicated public servant. . . . It has been a pleasure and honor to work with Judge Griffin these many years. I know he will serve with honor and distinction as a Judge of the United States Court of Appeals." Excerpt from letter to Senator Carl Levin and Senator Debbie Stabenow, August 16, 2002.

Chief Judge William C. Whitbeck, Michigan Court of Appeals.

"Judge Griffin has served with great distinction on the Michigan Court of Appeals for fourteen years. He is a decisive scholarly judge with an instinct for the core issues and with a flair for authoring crisp understandable opinions. He has written over 280 published opinions, has written hundreds of unpublished opinions, and has decided thousands of cases. . . . Judge Griffin is a good man and a good judge. Considered on the merits, there is no question in my mind that he is fully qualified to serve on the Sixth Circuit; the operative word here is ‘serve’ as that is precisely what Judge Griffin will do, serve the people and the public interest to the full extent of his considerable abilities." Excerpt from letter to Senator Carl Levin and Senator Debbie Stabenow, July 19, 2002.

Judge Stephen L. Borrello, Michigan Court of Appeals.

"Judge Griffin is one of the finest jurists in the State. While we may differ on a particular legal issue, I find that our differences are rooted in honest disagreements about the application of legal standards to a particular set of facts, rather than a difference of judicial or political philosophy. Judge Griffin does not belong to that class of jurists, on either the right or the left, that seek in every case to impose their political will rather than the rule of law." Excerpt from letter to Chairman Orrin G. Hatch, July 11, 2004.