The United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit made judicial history earlier this month with the convening of the first all-Alaskan appellate panel. Circuit Judge Morgan Christen of Anchorage, center, Senior Circuit Judge Andrew J. Kleinfeld of Fairbanks, left, and Senior District Judge John W. Sedwick, also of Anchorage and sitting by designation, heard oral arguments October 11, 2013, at the Richard H. Chambers U.S. Court of Appeals Building in Pasadena, California. Appellate panels are randomly assigned and the all-Alaskan panel resulted from the luck of the draw. Judges Kleinfeld and Christen are the second and third Alaskans to serve on the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, while Judge Sedwick has served for more than 20 years as a judge of the U.S. District Court for the District of Alaska. The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals hears appeals of cases decided by executive branch agencies and federal trial courts in nine western states and two Pacific Island jurisdictions.
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