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Claire Evans Profiled in National Law Journal Series on SCOTUS Clerks

The National Law Journal
December 29, 2017

Claire J. Evans, chair of Wiley Rein’s Appellate Practice, was profiled in The National Law Journal (NLJ) on December 14 as part of the publication’s series examining the professional pathways and diversity of Supreme Court law clerks.

Ms. Evans—who received her J.D. from Rutgers University School of Law at Camden and clerked for Justice Clarence Thomas in 2008—described to NLJ her journey to a Supreme Court clerkship. She credits her success to a long list of mentors, including an associate dean at the law school who first encouraged her to intern with U.S. District Judge Jerome Simandle of the District of New Jersey. After that experience, Ms. Evans clerked for Judge Simandle and Michael Chertoff, then a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, who went on to become the U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security in 2005. Ms. Evans eventually came to Washington to work for Secretary Chertoff in the Department of Homeland Security’s Office of General Counsel, after which she secured a Bristow Fellowship in the Solicitor General’s Office, and worked briefly in the Criminal Division of the U.S. Department of Justice. She then clerked for Judge David Sentelle of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia before being selected by Justice Thomas as a clerk for the 2008 Term.

“My path was a particularly circuitous one,” Ms. Evans said. “But none of it would have happened without the support of the school and the judges I clerked for. For me, it was vital to have the school’s backing. Everyone from the dean down was 100 percent behind me, encouraging me, writing letters. That made an extraordinary difference.”

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