Lawrence J. Block
Lawrence J. Block is a retired Judge of the United States Court of Federal Claims. He was nominated by U.S. president George W. Bush on September 4, 2001, and took office on October 3, 2002. He retired on January 8, 2016.
Block was born on March 15, 1951, in New York City, New York. He earned his bachelor’s degree magna cum laude from New York University and his Juris Doctor degree from The John Marshall Law School. He then clerked for United States District Court Judge Roger J. Miner. He was an adjunct professor at the George Mason University School of Law from 1990 to 1991.
Before becoming an attorney in the U.S. Department of Justice in 1986, he practiced law in New York. He also served as Senior Attorney-Advisor in the Office of Legal Policy and Policy Development. From 1994 to 2002, he served as Senior Counsel to the Senate Judiciary Committee while Senator Orrin Hatch was either chairman or a ranking member of the committee.
Judge Block is a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The Church News quoted him in an article in November 2004:
- "My mother fled to this country in 1938 from the Nazi Empire," he said. "And most of her family was tortured and murdered in unimaginable ways in a systematic attempt by Hitler and his criminal cronies to exterminate Europe's Jewry. These were decent and hard-working people. Their only crime: to worship the Lord in their own way and to practice the faith of their ancestors, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
- "Since childhood, I have been conscious more than most, therefore, of the blessings that God Himself has bestowed on this nation. These blessings are not simply great wealth, but are instead, the gifts of liberty and peace. There is not a day that goes by that I do not thank God for sparing my mother's life and for the great gifts that we Americans share. Simply put, I am a living example of what is still the 'American Dream.' I am a son of a refugee. And my elevation to the federal bench truly represents the victory of that American dream and in a very real way the final defeat of Adolf Hitler.”