Without a single “nay” vote, and with at least some noting that she will be the first woman of color to join the Fed. Cir., the Senate has confirmed Kara Fernandez Stoll, a litigation partner at Finnegan, to fill the seat vacated by Judge Rader’s resignation at the end of June. Soon-to-be Judge Stoll holds an BSEE degree from Michigan State and worked as an Examiner in computer/electronics art units before joining Finnegan.
As an EE, Stoll must have taken some chemistry, and she lists medical devices as an area of expertise on her resume. She also represented WARF in the Consumer Watchdog appeal, which, although the focus of the appeal was standing, involved a challenge to stem cell patents. The Fed. Cir. has been in need of more Judges with technical backgrounds. Judge Lourie was a chemist and Judge Moore holds an EE degree, but that’s about it. Congratulations to Ms. Stoll and to President Obama, who has appointed a number of Fed. Cir. judges with excellent qualifications.