Bench Memos

Law & the Courts

Who is Dan Collins?

Dan Collins is President Trump’s nominee to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit from California.

Age:  55 (approximate)

Current Position:  Partner, Munger, Tolles & Olson LLP (Los Angeles, CA) 

Education:

  • B.A., Harvard University; summa cum laude (1985); Phi Beta Kappa
  • J.D., Stanford Law School (1999), with distinction; Order of the Coif; Notes Editor, Stanford Law Review

Judicial Clerkships: Judge Dorothy Nelson, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit (1988-1989); Associate Justice Antonin Scalia, U.S. Supreme Court (1991-1992)

Professional Experience:

  • 1991-1996; 2003-Present: Partner, Munger, Tolles & Olson LLP (Los Angeles, CA)
  • 2001-2003: Associate Deputy Attorney General, Office of the Deputy Attorney General, U.S. Department of Justice (Washington, D.C.)
  • 1992-1996: Assistant U.S. Attorney, U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Central District of California (Los Angeles, CA)
  • 1989-1991: Attorney-Advisor, Office of Legal Counsel, U.S. Department of Justice (Washington, D.C.)

Career Notes:

  • Collins’ practice at Munger, Tolles & Olson focuses on appellate and complex commercial litigation. Over the course of his career, he has argued 36 cases in the Ninth Circuit, including two before the en banc court, and four cases in the California Supreme Court. Mr. Collins has also argued before the International Court of Justice in The Hague.
  • In 2008, Mr. Collins obtained a complete reversal of the largest civil judgment in U.S. history (more than $603 million).
  • While serving in the Deputy Attorney General’s office, Mr. Collins coordinated the DOJ’s efforts on several major legislative and policy initiatives and testified multiple times before the House and Senate Judiciary Committees.
  • As a federal prosecutor in Los Angeles, Mr. Collins prosecuted more than 60 criminal cases, including eight jury trials. Collins was a member of the criminal appeals section, where he supervised the preparation of more than 100 appellate briefs and argued numerous cases before the Ninth Circuit.

Honors:

  • Collins has been recognized nationwide and in California as a leading appellate lawyer by Chambers USA.

 

Carrie Severino is chief counsel and policy director to the Judicial Crisis Network.

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