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Allen gets federal seat in Norfolk

The U.S. Senate confirmed this afternoon the nomination of Arenda L. Wright Allen for a U.S. district judgeship in Norfolk.

Allen has been an assistant federal defender in Norfolk since December 2005 and has headed the office for the past five years. Before joining the defender’s office, she worked for 14 years as an assistant U.S. attorney in Norfolk.

A graduate of Kutztown University in 1982 and North Carolina Central University law school in 1985, Wright served five years of active duty in the Navy Judge Advocate General’s Corps and 15 years in the reserves.

Allen will fill a vacancy created when Judge Jerome B. Friedman took senior status.

Virginia’s two Democratic senators, Jim Webb and Mark Warner, recommended her appointment to President Barack Obama in December, and Obama nominated her in March.

Still pending before the Senate is the nomination of Roanoke U.S. Magistrate Judge Michael F. Urbanski for the Western District vacancy created when Judge Norman K. Moon took senior status.

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