Barbara M. Keenan
The Honorable Barbara Milano Keenan is a United States Circuit Judge of United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit and a former justice on the Supreme Court of Virginia.
Early life and education
One of four children of James Vincent Milano and the former Ann Pozega, Barbara Louise Milano was born in 1950 in Vienna, Austria, where her father, an Army colonel, was the chief of intelligence operations. From 1967 to 1971, Milano attended Cornell University, graduating with a B.A. in American History. She took her J.D. from George Washington University in 1974.
Following her admission to the Virginia Bar in June 1974, Ardis was an assistant commonwealth's attorney for Fairfax County until 1976. After leaving the Commonwealth's Attorney's office, she engaged in private practice, first as a solo practitioner from 1976 to 1978 and later as a name partner in the firm of Keenan, Ardis, and Roehrenbeck from June 1978 to 1980 with Lawrence R. Keenan and David C. Roehrenbeck.
In December 1979, Ardis was one of three nominees, along with Richard T. Horan and Alphonse J. Audet, for the seat on the bench of the General District Court that opened up when Judge J. Mason Grove retired. Following her election by the General Assembly, Ardis began serving on the bench on February 1, 1980.
Following the resignation of Judge James C. Cacheris to become a federal judge in December 1981, Judge Keenan was one of three candidates, along with Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court Judge Johanna L. Fitzpatrick and attorney Quinlan H. Hancock, to replace Judge Cacheris on the Circuit Court. In February 1982, Judge Keenan was elected to the bench of the Circuit Court, and was sworn in on February 26, becoming the first woman to sit on the bench of a circuit court in Virginia.
The General Assembly in 1983 created the Court of Appeals of Virginia to serve as an intermediate court between the circuit courts and the Supreme Court of Virginia, and Judge Keenan was elected as one of the first ten members of the court on December 17, 1984.
After six years on the Court of Appeals, Keenan sought the seat on the Supreme Court of Virginia opened by the retirement of Judge Charles S. Russell. Following her election in February 1991, Judge Keenan was sworn in to the bench of the Supreme Court on July 2.
On September 14, 2009, President Barack Obama nominated Justice Keenan for the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. Five months later, on March 2, 2010, Keenan's appointment was confirmed by a 99-0 vote of the U.S. Senate.
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- Barbara Milano Keenan article on Wikipedia