Judge David Tatel has served on the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit since October 1994. He assumed senior status on May 16, 2022.
Judge Tatel earned his undergraduate degree from the University of Michigan and his J.D. from the University of Chicago in 1966. Following law school, Judge Tatel was an instructor at the University of Michigan Law School and then joined the firm Sidley, Austin, Burgess & Smith in Chicago. Leaving private practice in 1969, Judge Tatel first served as Director of the Chicago Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law and then Director of the National Committee. He was the Director of the Office for Civil Rights of the U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare during the Carter Administration. When he returned to private practice in 1979, Judge Tatel joined Hogan & Hartson, where he founded and headed the firm’s education practice until his appointment to the D.C. Circuit.
Judge Tatel co-chairs the National Academy of Sciences’ Committee on Science, Technology and Law. He is a member of the American Philosophical Society and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. In the past, he chaired the boards of The Spencer Foundation and The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. Among many other activities, Judge Tatel also previously served on the Board of the Federal Judicial Center and the Judicial Advisory Board of the American Society of International Law.
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