On March 23, 2022, the U.S. Senate confirmed Washington Court of Appeals Judge John H. Chun to serve on the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington, establishing him as the first Korean American and first male Asian American Article III judge to preside in the state of Washington.
A Pacific Northwest native and the son of South Korean immigrants, Judge Chun graduated from Columbia University with a bachelor's degree in English. He then graduated from Cornell Law School, becoming the first in his family to earn a law degree. While there, he served as a note editor on the Cornell Law Review.
Judge Chun started his career as a law clerk to the Honorable Eugene A. Wright of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. He then entered private practice and focused on complex commercial and employment litigation for more than 18 years. While in private practice, Judge Chun received recognition from various organizations, including recognition as a top Washington “Super Lawyer.”
Judge Chun’s judicial service began in 2014, presiding in the King County Superior Court. In 2018, he began serving on the Washington Court of Appeals, Division I. President Biden nominated Judge Chun for a judgeship at the Western District of Washington in September 2021.
Judge Chun previously served as the President of the Korean American Bar Association of Washington (“KABA”), receiving KABA’s Community Leadership Award. Judge Chun is a long-time member of ABAW and the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (“NAPABA”). He currently serves as a Board Member At Large for the Asian Bar Association of Washington’s Student Scholarship Foundation (“ABAWSSF”). Judge Chun has also served as a mentor to many attorneys and law students.
ABAW is extremely proud of Judge Chun’s historic confirmation and extends its thanks to President Biden and Senators Murray and Cantwell for their support.
For ABAW's full announcement, please click here.