United States District Court for the Northern District of Georgia
(N.D. Ga.)
LocationRichard B. Russell Federal Building
More locations
Appeals toEleventh Circuit
EstablishedAugust 11, 1848
Chief JudgeTimothy Batten
Officers of the court
U.S. AttorneyRyan K. Buchanan
U.S. MarshalThomas E. Brown

The United States District Court for the Northern District of Georgia (in case citations, N.D. Ga.) is a United States district court which serves the residents of forty-six counties. These are divided up into four divisions.

Appeals from cases brought in the Northern District of Georgia are to the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit (except for patent claims and claims against the U.S. government under the Tucker Act, which are appealed to the Federal Circuit).


The United States District Court for the District of Georgia was one of the original 13 courts established by the Judiciary Act of 1789, 1 Stat. 73, on September 24, 1789.[1] The District was subdivided into Northern and Southern Districts on August 11, 1848, by 9 Stat. 280.[1][2][3] The Middle District was formed from portions of those two Districts on May 28, 1926, by 44 Stat. 670.[1]


Jurisdiction and venue are enumerated in 28 U.S.C. § 90.

The Atlanta division includes: Cherokee, Clayton, Cobb, DeKalb, Douglas, Fulton, Gwinnett, Henry, Newton, and Rockdale counties.

The Gainesville division serves: Banks, Barrow, Dawson, Fannin, Forsyth, Gilmer, Habersham, Hall, Jackson, Lumpkin, Pickens, Rabun, Stephens, Towns, Union, and White counties.

The Newnan division hears cases for: Carroll, Coweta, Fayette, Haralson, Heard, Meriwether, Pike, Spalding, and Troup counties.

The Rome division serves: Bartow, Catoosa, Chattooga, Dade, Floyd, Gordon, Murray, Paulding, Polk, Walker, and Whitfield counties.

The United States Attorney's Office for the Northern District of Georgia represents the United States in civil and criminal litigation in the court.

As of May 2, 2022, the United States attorney is Ryan K. Buchanan.[4]

Current judges

As of December 28, 2022:

# Title Judge Duty station Born Term of service Appointed by
Active Chief Senior
37 Chief Judge Timothy Batten Atlanta
1960 2006–present 2021–present G.W. Bush
39 District Judge Steve C. Jones Atlanta 1957 2011–present Obama
40 District Judge Leigh Martin May Atlanta 1971 2014–present Obama
41 District Judge Mark Howard Cohen Atlanta 1955 2014–present Obama
42 District Judge Eleanor L. Ross Atlanta 1967 2014–present Obama
43 District Judge Michael Lawrence Brown Atlanta 1968 2018–present Trump
44 District Judge William M. Ray II Atlanta 1963 2018–present Trump
45 District Judge J. P. Boulee Atlanta 1971 2019–present Trump
46 District Judge Steven D. Grimberg Atlanta 1974 2019–present Trump
47 District Judge Victoria Calvert Atlanta 1981 2022–present Biden
48 District Judge Sarah Geraghty Atlanta 1974 2022–present Biden
23 Senior Judge Orinda Dale Evans inactive 1943 1979–2008 1999–2006 2008–present Carter
29 Senior Judge Clarence Cooper inactive[5] 1942 1994–2009 2009–present Clinton
31 Senior Judge Willis B. Hunt Jr. inactive 1932 1995–2005 2005–present Clinton
32 Senior Judge Thomas W. Thrash Jr. Atlanta 1951 1997–2021 2014–2021 2021–present Clinton
33 Senior Judge Richard W. Story Atlanta
1953 1998–2018 2018–present Clinton
34 Senior Judge Charles A. Pannell Jr. Atlanta 1946 1999–2013 2013–present Clinton
38 Senior Judge Amy Totenberg Atlanta 1950 2011–2021 2021–present Obama

Vacancies and pending nominations

Seat Prior judge's duty station Seat last held by Vacancy reason Date of vacancy Nominee Date of nomination
6 Atlanta Steve C. Jones Senior status January 1, 2025[6]

Former judges

# Judge State Born–died Active service Chief Judge Senior status Appointed by Reason for
1 John Cochran Nicoll GA 1793–1863 1848–1861[Note 1][Note 2] Van Buren/Operation of law resignation
2 John Erskine GA 1813–1895 1865–1882[Note 3][Note 2] A. Johnson seat abolished
3 Henry Kent McCay GA 1820–1886 1882–1886 Arthur death
4 William Truslow Newman GA 1843–1920 1886–1920[Note 4] Cleveland death
5 Samuel Hale Sibley GA 1873–1958 1919–1931 Wilson elevation to 5th Cir.
6 Emory Marvin Underwood GA 1877–1960 1931–1948 1948–1960 Hoover death
7 Robert Lee Russell GA 1900–1955 1940–1949 1949 F. Roosevelt elevation to 5th Cir.
8 Maurice Neil Andrews GA 1894–1967 1949–1950[Note 5] 1949–1950 Truman resignation
9 Frank Arthur Hooper GA 1895–1985 1949–1967[Note 6] 1950–1965 1967–1985 Truman death
10 William Boyd Sloan GA 1895–1970 1951–1965 1965–1970 Truman death
11 Lewis Render Morgan GA 1913–2001 1961–1968 1965–1968 Kennedy elevation to 5th Cir.
12 Sidney Oslin Smith Jr. GA 1923–2012 1965–1974 1968–1974 L. Johnson resignation
13 Newell Edenfield GA 1911–1981 1967–1981 1974–1976 1981 L. Johnson death
14 Albert John Henderson GA 1920–1999 1968–1979 1976–1979 L. Johnson elevation to 5th Cir.
15 Charles Allen Moye Jr. GA 1918–2010 1970–1988 1979–1987 1988–2010 Nixon death
16 William Clark O'Kelley GA 1930–2017 1970–1996 1988–1994 1996–2017 Nixon death
17 Richard Cameron Freeman GA 1926–1999 1971–1991 1991–1999 Nixon death
18 James Clinkscales Hill GA 1924–2017 1974–1976 Nixon elevation to 5th Cir.
19 Harold Lloyd Murphy GA 1927–2022 1977–2017 2017–2022 Carter death
20 Marvin Herman Shoob SC 1923–2017 1979–1991 1991–2017 Carter death
21 Robert L. Vining Jr. GA 1931–2022 1979–1996 1995–1996 1996–2022 Carter death
22 George Ernest Tidwell GA 1931–2011 1979–1999 1996–1999 1999–2011 Carter death
24 Robert Howell Hall GA 1921–1995 1979–1990 1990–1995 Carter death
25 Horace Ward GA 1927–2016 1979–1993 1993–2016 Carter death
26 J. Owen Forrester GA 1939–2014 1981–2004 2004–2014 Reagan death
27 Jack Tarpley Camp Jr. GA 1943–present 1988–2008 2006–2008 2008–2010 Reagan retirement
28 Julie E. Carnes GA 1950–present 1992–2014 2009–2014 G.H.W. Bush elevation to 11th Cir.
30 Frank M. Hull GA 1948–present 1994–1997 Clinton elevation to 11th Cir.
35 Beverly B. Martin GA 1955–present 2000–2010 Clinton elevation to 11th Cir.
36 William S. Duffey Jr. GA 1952–present 2004–2018 G.W. Bush retirement
  1. ^ Reassigned from the District of Georgia.
  2. ^ a b Jointly appointed to the Northern and Southern Districts of Georgia.
  3. ^ Recess appointment; formally nominated on December 20, 1865, confirmed by the United States Senate on January 22, 1866, and received commission the same day.
  4. ^ Recess appointment; formally nominated on December 9, 1886, confirmed by the Senate on January 13, 1887, and received commission the same day.
  5. ^ Recess appointment; resigned before the Senate considered the appointment.
  6. ^ Recess appointment; formally nominated on January 5, 1950, confirmed by the Senate on February 21, 1950, and received commission on February 23, 1950.

Chief judges

Chief judges have administrative responsibilities with respect to their district court. Unlike the Supreme Court, where one justice is specifically nominated to be chief, the office of chief judge rotates among the district court judges. To be chief, a judge must have been in active service on the court for at least one year, be under the age of 65, and have not previously served as chief judge.

A vacancy is filled by the judge highest in seniority among the group of qualified judges. The chief judge serves for a term of seven years, or until age 70, whichever occurs first. The age restrictions are waived if no members of the court would otherwise be qualified for the position.

When the office was created in 1948, the chief judge was the longest-serving judge who had not elected to retire, on what has since 1958 been known as senior status, or declined to serve as chief judge. After August 6, 1959, judges could not become or remain chief after turning 70 years old. The current rules have been in operation since October 1, 1982.

Succession of seats

U.S. Attorneys

See also


  1. ^ a b c U.S. District Courts of Georgia, Legislative history, Federal Judicial Center.
  2. ^ Asbury Dickens, A Synoptical Index to the Laws and Treaties of the United States of America (1852), p. 390.
  3. ^ Alfred Conkling, A Treatise on the Organization, Jurisdiction and Practice of the Courts of the United States (1864), p. 179.
  4. ^ "Ryan K. Buchanan sworn in as U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Georgia" (Press release). Atlanta, Georgia: U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia. May 2, 2022. Retrieved May 2, 2022.
  5. ^ "The Honorable Clarence Cooper Assumes Inactive Senior Status After More Than 27 Years of Service | Northern District of Georgia | United States District Court".
  6. ^ "Future Judicial Vacancies | United States Courts". www.uscourts.gov.
  7. ^ "Northern District of Georgia | Former U.S. Attorneys for the Northern District of Georgia". www.justice.gov. 2017-10-30. Retrieved 2024-04-08.