|Judge of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania|
|Assumed office |
November 21, 2014
|Appointed by||Barack Obama|
|Preceded by||Michael Baylson|
|Born||April 4, 1961|
|Education||University of Liverpool (B.A.)|
University of Pennsylvania Law School (J.D.)
Wendy Beetlestone (born April 4, 1961) is a United States district judge of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.
Beetlestone attended Rishworth School in Yorkshire, before graduating with a Bachelor of Arts degree, cum laude, in 1984 from the University of Liverpool. She received a Juris Doctor in 1993 from the University of Pennsylvania Law School. She began her legal career as a law clerk for Judge Robert S. Gawthrop III, of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, from 1993 to 1994. From 1994 to 2002, she worked at the law firm of Schnader, Harrison, Segal & Lewis LLP, becoming a partner in 2001. From 2002 to 2005, she served as General Counsel of the School District of Philadelphia. From 2005 to 2014, she had been a shareholder at the law firm of Hangley, Aronchick, Segal, Pudlin & Schiller, where she litigated a variety of commercial matters before both Federal and State courts. In 2023, she was announced as the next Chancellor of the University of Liverpool. She is the University’s eleventh Chancellor and the institution’s first female, and first Black, Chancellor.
On June 16, 2014, President Barack Obama nominated Beetlestone to serve as a United States District Judge of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, to the seat vacated by Judge Michael Baylson, who assumed senior status on July 13, 2012. On July 24, 2014, a hearing before the United States Senate Committee on the Judiciary was held on her nomination. On September 18, 2014, her nomination was reported out of committee by a voice vote. On November 18, 2014, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid filed for cloture on her nomination. On Wednesday November 19, 2014, the United States Senate invoked cloture on her nomination by a 58–38 vote. On Thursday, November 20, 2014, her nomination was confirmed by a voice vote. She received her judicial commission on November 21, 2014.
Among other notable cases in which she has presided, on December 15, 2017, Beetlestone issued a nationwide injunction prohibiting the enforcement of regulations that allowed employers to refuse to cover contraception in their employees’ insurance plans if they have either religious objections to birth control or “sincerely held moral convictions” against it. “It is difficult,” Judge Beetlestone wrote, “to comprehend a rule that does more to undermine the contraceptive mandate or that intrudes more into the lives of women.” Judge Beetlestone issued a second nationwide injunction after President Trump issued revised rules.