[We are pleased to have received the following press release from the Public Information Office of the Supreme Court of the United States.]
Matthew A. Axtell has been selected as the 2014-2015 Supreme Court Fellow assigned to the Federal Judicial Center. He comes to the Supreme Court Fellows Program from the New York University School of Law, where he served as the Samuel I. Golieb Fellow in Legal History for the 2013-2014 academic year.
The Supreme Court Fellows Program was created in 1973 by the late Chief Justice Warren E. Burger to provide promising individuals with a first-hand understanding of the federal government, in particular, the judicial branch. In the words of Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Jr., the program offers “a unique opportunity for exceptional individuals to contribute to the administration of justice at the national level.”
Each year fellows work with top officials in the judicial branch of government. With assignments at the Supreme Court, the Federal Judicial Center, the Administrative Office of the U. S. Courts, and the U. S. Sentencing Commission, fellows have been involved in various projects examining the federal judicial process and seeking, proposing, and implementing solutions to problems in the administration of justice.
Axtell will spend his fellowship year in the History Division of the Federal Judicial Center. His fellowship begins in the fall.
Following law school, Axtell worked as an assistant counsel for environmental law for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and then as an environmental law associate for Vinson & Elkins LLP in Washington, D.C. Axtell is currently a doctoral candidate in Princeton University’s history department, focusing primarily on how legal concepts and actors have shaped, and been shaped by, markets, property relations, geography, and economic reasoning. He has published widely on issues of environmental law and American legal history and is the recipient of various research fellowships and grants including those from the Harvard Business School, the Smithsonian Institution, the Kentucky Historical Society, the Filson Historical Society, Indiana University, and the Institute for New Economic Thinking. In 2013, Axtell was named a William Nelson Cromwell Fellow by the American Society for Legal History and a Kathryn T. Preyer Scholar.
Axtell earned a B.A. in history, with highest honors, from the University of California at Berkeley in 1998, a J.D. from the University of Virginia School of Law in 2002, where he won the Traynor Price for Best Writing, and an M.A. in history from Princeton University, with distinction, in 2010.
The Supreme Court Fellows are selected by a commission composed of nine members selected by the Chief Justice of the United States.