President Joe Biden will announce his intention Wednesday to nominate an attorney whose Senate confirmation would make him the first Muslim American judge to serve on a federal appeals court, a White House official said.
The nominee, Adeel A. Mangi, has served on the board of directors of the Muslim Bar Association of New York, the Legal Aid Society of New York and Muslims for Progressive Values and as an ally board member for the National LGBT Bar Association, according to his biographical page at the law firm Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler LLP, where he’s a partner.
If he’s confirmed, he would sit on the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, based in Philadelphia. The court covers Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware and the Virgin Islands.
As an attorney, Mangi has worked with clients on commercial contracts, false advertising and consumer protection statutes in state and federal courts, having secured a $2 billion verdict last year in a case involving theft of trade secrets in the software industry.
The White House on Wednesday highlighted Mangi’s handling of court filings before state and federal appeals courts, including one that appeared before the Supreme Court on behalf of a multi-faith religious coalition.
Biden has faced increasing pressure to address Islamophobia as both Muslims and Jewish people face growing threats in the wake of the Oct. 7 Hamas attacks on Israel. Some Muslim voters have expressed frustration with Biden’s declaration last month of unwavering support for Israel without seeking a cease-fire.
Mangi has been involved in legal disputes involving accusations of discrimination against Muslims. In 2016, he filed a federal lawsuit on behalf of a local Islamic group that alleged anti-Muslim sentiment over a planning board’s denial of a proposal to build a mosque in New Jersey.
Mangi is one of five nominees whom Biden will announce Wednesday, the White House official said.
Another nominee, St. Joseph County, Indiana, Superior Court Judge Cristal Brisco, would be the first Black woman and the first woman of color to serve on the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Indiana if she is confirmed.
The Democratic-led Senate this month confirmed Biden’s 150th federal judge. By the end of his presidency, Donald Trump had appointed more than 200 judges, while President Barack Obama appointed 324 over eight years.
White House counsel Ed Siskel said in a statement Wednesday that the new nominations expand on Biden’s efforts “to bring professional and demographic diversity to the federal judiciary.”