The U.S. Senate on Thursday confirmed Madison attorney James Peterson as a federal judge in the Western District of Wisconsin.
Peterson, a shareholder at Godfrey & Kahn SC, was nominated by President Barack Obama in November to fill the seat vacated by John Shabaz, who assumed senior status in 2009 and died in 2012 at age 81.
The Senate confirmed Peterson’s nomination 70-24.
Peterson, 56, said that the nomination process felt long, but that he is “very eager to start working at the court.” He said he expects to take the bench in about 10 days.
“It’s a big job and I’ve got a lot to learn,” he said. “I have really great colleagues to work with.”
Peterson heads Godfrey & Kahn’s intellectual property litigation working group and is a member of the firm’s litigation and intellectual property practice groups. He received his law degree from the University of Wisconsin in 1998 and served a year as clerk for former appellate Judge David Deininger.
Prior to obtaining his law degree, Peterson was a faculty member at the University of Notre Dame.