The Association of U S West Retirees



Where’s Herb? ( * ) He’s in the Rocky Mountain News!
By Peter Lattman
The Wall Street Journal
Wednesday, January 17, 2007

The Rocky Mountain News ran a big 2,000-odd word profile over the weekend on Herbert Stern, the former federal judge and U.S. Attorney in New Jersey defending former Qwest CEO Joseph Nacchio, who is expected to go on trial in March on charges of insider trading.

We were thrilled that the News reported on an exchange that the Law Blog had last summer with Stern, who served as a federal judge from 1974 to 1987.  After noting that Stern’s secretary still answered the phone “Judge Stern,” we asked him why he still used that title some two decades after stepping down from the bench.  Stern interrupted us:  “Let me ease your pain.  You can call me Herb and we’ll get along just fine.  OK?  I gotta go.”  Click.

After leaving the judiciary, Stern spurned offers from Big Law to join a small New Jersey firm now called Stern & Kilcullen.  He’s also representing Steven Schulman, a former partner at Milberg Weiss who is charged with conspiring to provide kickbacks to clients.  In 2005, he was also appointed to monitor the finances of the University of Dentistry and Medicine of New Jersey after the school agreed to an arrangement to avoid criminal prosecution for Medicaid fraud.

Will Stern’s background as an East Coast prosecutor and federal judge play well in the Mile High City? It’s unclear, says the News.  Judge Edward Nottingham keeps tight rein over his court room;  and the story notes — though we’re not exactly sure what it means — that Nottingham is the only Colorado federal judge to wear a blue rather than black robe.

( * )  Sorry for the horrible headline.  We couldn’t resist a reference to one of the more (or was it less?) memorable advertising campaigns of our youth.


-  Judge Stern also presided over the only case ever tried before the United States District Court of Berlin, producing a fascinating opinion, and later a book by Judge Stern, off of which a movie is based.

Comment by Adam B. - January 16, 2007 at 3:20 pm

-  Judge Nottingham is “affectionately” known as “the Sheriff” and is fondly known for his 6:00 am status conferences when he wants counsel (particularly those from out of town) to be aware he has an issue.

Comment by RMF - January 16, 2007 at 4:15 pm

-  I would hate, and I do mean hate, to go against this guy in court.

Comment by DOJ is in trouble - January 17, 2007 at 12:59 am