Summer 2023 Newsletter

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News from the Clerk of the Court

Federal Circuit and CIT Case Summaries



Notable Announcements:

CITBA Summer Fellowship Awards

CITBA is honored to announce the 2023 recipients of its Summer Fellowship Awards. The Summer Fellowship Awards program is cosponsored by the Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Committee of CITBA and the International Economic Law Interest Group of the American Society of International Law (ASIL). The fellowships provide financial support for law students from underrepresented groups to enable them to acquire summer work experience practicing international trade and economic law with a government agency, court, public interest organization, or international organization. The 2023 winners are Jordan Higgins of Howard University School of Law, Christian Jimenez of UCLA School of Law, and Emily Yan of NYU School of Law. Higgins will intern with the Department of Justice International Trade Field Office and Jimenez and Yan will both intern with Court of International Trade Judge Timothy Reif.

CITBA Letter on CIT Vacancies

On April 20, 2023, CITBA, on behalf of its private sector members, sent a letter to White House Counsel urging President Biden to nominate judges to fill two vacancies at the U.S. Court of International Trade. According to the letter, longstanding vacancies on the bench compromise the CIT’s ability to provide for the “just, speedy, and inexpensive determination of every action and proceeding” before it. You can read the full letter here.

Past Events:

2023 Annual Meeting

CITBA’s Annual Meeting was held at the Court of International Trade on April 27, 2023, along with a Special Session of the Court honoring trailblazing women.

On behalf of the Court’s Historical Society, Judge Aquilino and Patrick Reed provided insight into the Honorable Genevieve Rose Cline and the Honorable Mary H. Donlon.  With total attribution to the Historical Society and its work, for those of you who missed the presentation, a few significant highlights:

Judge Cline was appointed to the United States Customs Court in 1928, becoming the first female Judge in the history of the federal judiciary.  Prior to her judicial appointment, Judge Cline was appointed as the first female Appraiser for Cleveland, Ohio.  Judge Cline served on the bench for 25 years and according to the Historical Society, she remarked at a reception after taking the oath of office that she “shall meet all absolutely fairly as man to man in the court.”

Upon Judge Cline’s retirement, in 1955 President Eisenhower nominated Mary H. Donlon, another remarkable woman, to the United States Customs Court.  Judge Donlon was the first female federal Judge in New York state history.  Among her many other firsts, Judge Donlon was the first female partner at a Manhattan law firm and was among the first group of women admitted to the Association of the Bar of the City of New York.

In conjunction with this presentation, Jill Norgren, Professor Emerita of Political Science at John Jay College, provided insight from other consequential women including Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Janet Reno about barriers they overcame during their legal careers.  Professor Norgren’s detailed discussion of the discrimination such women faced can be found in “Stories from Trailblazing Women Lawyers:  Lives in the Law, Forgotten Stories of America’s First Women Lawyers” (NYU Press 2018).  In this book, Professor Norgren compiled oral histories from 100 women lawyers.

Next, Judge Reif moderated a lively panel discussing the Outlook for the United States in International Trade Dispute Resolution.  The panel was comprised of attorneys each of whom is still or recently has been involved in trade policy:  
  • Annelies Winborne, Deputy Assistant U.S. Trade Representative for Monitoring & Enforcement, Office of the United States Trade Representative
  • Alexandra Whittaker, Chief Trade Counsel and Trade Staff Director, House Committee on Ways and Means
  • Kelly Ann Shaw, Partner at Hogan Lovells, fmr. Deputy Assistant to the President for International Economics, the White House
  • Nasim Fussell, Senior Vice President at Lot Sixteen, fmr. Chief International Trade Counsel, Senate Finance Committee.

Following the panel, CITBA honored Michael O’Rourke with a Barbara S. Williams Lifetime Achievement Award.  Mike joins Kathy Cannon who was honored during our March 15th program as the 2022 recipients of the Award.  Mike and Kathy, respectively, have made immeasurable contributions to the practice of customs law and international trade.  Through their dedication to our Bar, practice before the Court has been developed and refined.  Their continued mentorship has changed the very face of the Bar.  CITBA is privileged and honored to include both among the recipients of the Barbara S. Williams Lifetime Achievement Award, an Award that has such meaning to CITBA.    
Finally, CITBA’s Board of Directors was elected.  One Board member voluntarily left the Board and was replaced by a former member.
CITBA thanks the Court for hosting CITBA’s panel program and its Annual Meeting in conjunction with the Historical Society’s presentation and appreciates the opportunity to work with the Court and the Historical Society on such a successful program.     

CIT Historical Society Law Clerk Reception

The Historical Society of the Court of International Trade is delighted to share some news and photos from the recent Court of International Trade Former Law Clerk Reception, hosted on May 3, 2023 at the prestigious offices of Kelley Drye & Warren LLP in New York City. This memorable event brought together a group of esteemed individuals who had held clerkships from the early 1990s to the present day, creating a wonderful opportunity for reflection, camaraderie, and the sharing of cherished memories. 

The venue itself provided an awe-inspiring backdrop for the occasion, as attendees were treated to a spectacular view of the iconic One World Trade Center. Against this breathtaking panorama, approximately 25 former law clerks from different eras convened to reconnect, reminisce, and celebrate the unique bond they shared through their clerkship experiences.

During this event, the Historical Society offered brief remarks, highlighting the importance of preserving the rich legacy of clerkships and the valuable contributions of these individuals to the legal profession. Attendees were reminded of the significant impact their clerkships had on their careers, shaping them into the accomplished legal professionals they are today.

Throughout the evening, the atmosphere was filled with laughter, animated conversations, and heartfelt exchanges as old friends and colleagues reconnected. The event fostered a sense of nostalgia, reigniting the shared experiences of long hours sorting legal issues, research challenges, and the mentorship received from esteemed judges.

As the evening drew to a close, the attendees expressed their gratitude for the opportunity to come together and celebrate their shared history. They extended heartfelt thanks to KDW for graciously hosting the reunion in their stunning offices.

The Law Clerk Reception was a testament to the enduring value of clerkship experiences and the lasting connections forged during those formative years. It served as a reminder of the importance of mentorship, camaraderie, and the preservation of legal history.

We extend our congratulations and gratitude to all the law clerks who attended the reunion and made it a resounding success. We are honored to have you as part of our community, and we look forward to continuing our shared journey of preserving legal heritage and fostering the growth and excellence of the legal profession.

To that end, we ask that you join the CIT Historical Society and participate in its activities.  We will be coordinating more opportunities for former law clerk engagement.  We also will be pivoting to events featuring . . . um . . . more seasoned . . . members of our bar.  Capturing the experiences of attorneys who have a long history with the Court will provide invaluable insights to young and old alike.  You can find the application for membership to the Court of International Trade Historical Society at  And, demonstrating that even Historical Societies can modernize, we now accept PayPal for your membership dues.

Please inform Tina Potuto Kimble if you would like to participate in the newly established former law clerk subcommittee of the CIT Historical Society.  Tina can be reached at


Views from the Hill Fireside Chat

On June 5, 2023, the Young Lawyer’s Committee of CITBA joined with GATT DC (LGBT Professionals in International Trade) and WIIT (the Association of Women in International Trade) to hold the sixth annual Views from the Hill event with Alexandra Whittaker, Ways & Means Committee, Chief Trade Counsel and Trade Staff Director (minority staff). The discussion was moderated by William (Bill) Reinsch, Senior Adviser and Scholl Chair in International Business, Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS). The off-the-record commentary and networking was enjoyed by all. Thank you to Sidley Austin LLC (Diversity and Inclusion Committee and International Trade Group) for sponsoring the evening.