Interview with Charles R. Simpson, III, April 11, 2018
Project: John G. Heyburn II Initiative for Excellence in the Federal Judiciary Oral History Project
Interview SummaryCharles R. Simpson, III is a Senior District Judge on the United States District Court for the Western District of Kentucky.
In this interview, Judge Simpson discusses his undergraduate and law school education at the University of Louisville, private practice as an insurance defense attorney, his personal and professional ties to Mitch McConnell, and his nomination to the federal bench in 1986. Other topics include his childhood in Louisville, a grand tour of Europe, his career as a bankruptcy trustee, and the federal nominations process in Kentucky in the 1970s and 1980s.
Born in Cleveland, Ohio in 1945, Judge Simpson grew up in Louisville, Kentucky and received his Bachelor of Arts degree in 1967 from the University of Louisville. He received his Juris Doctor in 1970 from the University of Louisville’s Brandeis School of Law. Thereafter, Simpson developed a private practice, advised Mitch McConnell, held various local political offices, and served as a bankruptcy trustee until 1986. On June 6, 1986, President Ronald Reagan nominated him to a seat on the Western District Court of Kentucky that was vacated by Judge Charles M. Allen. The United States Senate confirmed him two months later. After 27 years on the bench, Simpson took senior status in February 2013. Simpson is a member of the Judicial Conference and a former chairman of the Conference’s Committee on International Judicial Relations.
Interview KeywordJudicial nominations Economics majors Mitch McConnell Jefferson County Judge Executive Draft notices Deferments Insurance cases James Graham Brown Bankruptcy cases Republican lawyers Jefferson County Judge/Executive Bruce Miller Federal judgeships Nomination process Blue slips Federal Judicial Selection Commission District court judges
Interview LC SubjectUniversity of Louisville Vietnam War, 1961-1975 Europe Travel Law firms Bankruptcy trustees Insurance companies Louisville (Ky.) McConnell, Mitch Heyburn, John G. (John Gilpin) 1948-2015 Republican Party (U.S. : 1854- ) Local elections Political campaigns Elections Judges--Selection and appointment--United States Judges--United States Ford, Wendell H., 1924-2015 United States. Department of Justice. Office of Legal Policy United States. District Court. (Kentucky : Western District)
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Interview UsageInterviews may only be reproduced with permission from Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries.
Interviews may only be reproduced with permission from Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries.
All rights to the interviews, including but not restricted to legal title, copyrights and literary property rights, have been transferred to the University of Kentucky Libraries.
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III, Charles R. Simpson, Interview by Anu Kasarabada. 11 Apr. 2018. Lexington, KY: Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries.
III, C.R. (2018, April 11). Interview by A. Kasarabada. John G. Heyburn II Initiative for Excellence in the Federal Judiciary Oral History Project. Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries, Lexington.
III, Charles R. Simpson,, interview by Anu Kasarabada. April 11, 2018, John G. Heyburn II Initiative for Excellence in the Federal Judiciary Oral History Project, Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries.
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Persistent Link for this Record: https://kentuckyoralhistory.org/ark:/16417/xt7zgm81p414