7th Circuit, Federal Judges, Frank Easterbrook, Old People, Romance and Dating, Weddings

Judges in Love: Three Seventh Circuit Judges Getting Married

No, not to each other. In the states covered by the Seventh Circuit, marriage is still between one man and one woman — at least for now.

(By the way, there is precedent for judges from the same circuit court marrying each other. Back in 2004, then-Chief Judge Carolyn Dineen King and Judge Thomas M. Reavley, both of the Fifth Circuit, tied the knot.)

So yes, judges get married, just like us. But it’s noteworthy to have so many judicial nuptials in such a short span of time.

Two Seventh Circuit judges just got married, and a third — one who I never expected to get married — is engaged. Who are the jurists in question?

Please note the multiple UPDATES added after the jump.

Here’s a report from Michael Sneed of the Chicago Sun-Times:

Bench press . . .

Yipes! Who’s been passing out Kickapoo Joy Juice at the federal building?

Midwesterners have the cutest little terms for things. Apparently Kickapoo Joy Juice is a kind of soda carbonated beverage pop.

Translation: The Love Boat has docked at the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals! Sneed is told a gaggle of older (and ostensibly wiser) judges who have hit the mid-60 to 80-plus-year benchmarks are getting hitched.

A warning for Your Honors: have fun going en banc, but be careful about where you stick your gavels.

Legal briefs: Not only did Judge William “Bill” Bauer, a widower who experienced a lengthy, blissful marriage, initiate the marital mania by tying the knot again — but his sidekick and Sneed pal, Judge Ilana Rovner, widow of renowned Dr. Richard Rovner, also recently wed.

Judge Bauer’s first marriage — to Mary Nicol, a “pretty sociology major” when they met — lasted for 56 years, until Mary’s passing in 2006. Good for Judge Bauer, who turns 87 this September, for finding love again so late in life. Judge Rovner’s first marriage lasted for decades as well — 46 years, to be exact. Her husband, described by the Sun-Times as a “world-renowned epilepsy scientist, neurologist and psychologist,” had another distinction as well: comedian Buddy Hackett called Dr. Rovner “the funniest guy I ever met.”

Congratulations and best wishes to Judge Bauer and Judge Rovner. We don’t know anything about their new spouses, but if you have info, please feel free to share. You can reach us by email or by text message (646-820-8477). If their weddings show up in the New York Times this weekend, they will surely make Legal Eagle Wedding Watch.

UPDATE (11:30 p.m.): It seems that Judge Rovner has special affection for the medical profession. We understand that her new husband is Dr. Paul Friedmann, a general surgeon from Springfield, Massachusetts. Dr. Friedmann is very active in the American College of Surgeons, which is based in Chicago.

UPDATE (3/25/2013, 3:45 p.m.): We hear that Judge Bauer married Patricia Spratt, an appellate litigatrix and shareholder at Shefsky & Froelich. Spratt clerked for Judge Bauer from 1991 to 1992.

And now, the most exciting news of all:

Cupid’s bow: And now comes word that Chief Judge Frank Easterbrook, 64, who appeared to be a confirmed bachelor, got hit by Cupid’s arrow and is getting married soon!

I’ve been curious about the mysterious Judge Easterbrook for years. See, e.g., Where Is the Love… for Judge Frank Easterbrook?

Chief Judge Easterbrook is brilliant. He’s a judicial hottie (at least if you like bears). He’s financially secure. He has great job security (including the awesome Article III retirement benefits). So I and many others have wondered: Why isn’t this man married? He’s quite a catch.

Now there’s no need to wonder. Now His Honor has someone to spirit away to his Alaska love nest.

But not all of the questions presented have been answered. Most importantly, who is this Article III bear’s new honey pot? Inquiring minds want to know….

UPDATE (5:25 p.m.): A tipster tells us, “She is someone Easterbrook went to high school with, and they reconnected. She’s from Alaska, where she spends most of her time. The wedding is in Alaska on May 12.”

UPDATE (3/25/2013, 3:15 p.m.): From the Alaska Ear column of the Anchorage Daily News:

DO SEND A FONDU . . . to former City Clerk Barbara Gruenstein and Chicago federal appeals court Judge Frank Easterbrook. Friends say the two plan a romantic late afternoon wedding in Girdwood on May 12.

Federal Judge Morgan Christen will do the honors. The rings are by Anchorage artist Susan Serna.

This is one of those separated-for-40-years love stories: Barbara and Frank met in second grade in Kenmore, N.Y., and were in classes together through high school. Barbara learned at their 40th high school reunion that Frank owned a place in Girdwood and, voila!

Aww, that’s wonderful. Congratulations and best wishes to Chief Judge Easterbrook and his #EasterBride!

Bench Press [Chicago Sun-Times]
When Federal Appellate Judges Marry One Another [Howard J. Bashman]

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