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Chief Judge R. Guy Cole Jr., A72, was nominated by President Clinton and unanimously confirmed by the U.S. Senate in 1995 to a federal judgeship on the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, which hears all federal appeals from the States of Ohio, Michigan, Kentucky, and Tennessee. Judge Cole continued in active service from January 1996 until August 2014, when he assumed the role of Chief Judge for the Sixth Circuit-becoming the first African American to hold that position since the court's formation in 1869. During his 20 years on the bench, Judge Cole has authored hundreds of legal opinions, including landmark decisions on civil rights, criminal procedure, and the scope of the First Amendment. Prior to joining the Sixth Circuit, Judge Cole served as an attorney in private practice at the Columbus law firm of Vorys, Sater, Seymour and Pease, where he became the first African-American partner; as a litigator for the Commercial Litigation Branch of the Department of Justice in Washington, D.C.; and as a United States Bankruptcy Judge for the Southern District of Ohio. Judge Cole credits his parents and his upbringing in the "Dynamite Hill" area of Birmingham, Alabama, during the height of the civil rights movement for his decision to become a lawyer and judge. Witnessing the violence and depravity that sometimes befall mankind if left unchecked gave Judge Cole a lifelong and indomitable commitment to the principles of equality and justice for all. In addition to his judicial responsibilities, Judge Cole gives back to the community by serving as an adjunct professor at The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law and on the governing boards of several philanthropic organizations in central Ohio. Judge Cole lives in Columbus, Ohio, with his family and enjoys his time both on (and off) the bench.
Dafna Linzer is Managing Editor of MSNBC.com. Before joining MSNBC, she was an award-winning senior investigative reporter at ProPublica and is the author of "Shades of Mercy," a series and e-book on racial bias in presidential pardons. Previously, she covered national security for the Washington Post and was a special projects reporter and foreign correspondent with the Associated Press, based in Jerusalem and at the United Nations.
President & Chief Executive Officer, The New York Times Company Mark Thompson became president and chief executive officer of The New York Times Company on November 12, 2012. He is responsible for leading the Company's strategy, operations and business units, and working closely with the chairman to direct the vision of the company. Mr. Thompson has been instrumental in accelerating the pace of The Times's digital transformation. Under his leadership, The Times became the first news organization in the world to pass the one million digital-only subscription mark. The company has also introduced a new era of international growth, launched an industry leading branded content studio and invested in virtual reality, producing some of the most celebrated work in this emerging medium. Before joining the Times Company, Mr. Thompson served as Director-General of the BBC from 2004, where he reshaped the organization to meet the challenge of the digital age, ensuring that it remained a leading innovator with the launch of services such as the BBC iPlayer. He also oversaw a transformation of the BBC itself, driving productivity and efficiency through the introduction of new technologies and bold organizational redesign. Mr. Thompson joined the BBC in 1979 as a production trainee. He helped launch Watchdog and Breakfast Time, was an output editor on Newsnight, and was appointed editor of the Nine O'Clock News in 1988 and of Panorama in 1990. He became controller (programming and scheduling chief) for the TV network BBC2 and Director of Television for the BBC before leaving the BBC in 2002 to become CEO of Channel 4 Television Corporation in the United Kingdom. In the autumn of 2012, he was a visiting professor of Rhetoric and the Art of Public Persuasion at the University of Oxford. His book "Enough Said: What's Gone Wrong with the Language of Politics?" which is based on the lectures he gave at Oxford, was published in the UK and US in September 2016. Mark Thompson was educated at Stonyhurst College and Merton College, Oxford.
Timothy Tymkovich is a native third-generation Coloradan. He is a 1979 graduate of The Colorado College, and a 1982 graduate of the University of Colorado School of Law. After graduation, he clerked for Chief Justice William Erickson of the Colorado Supreme Court. After his clerkship, he worked for the Denver law firm, David Graham & Stubbs, in its Denver and Washington DC offices. In 1991, he joined Colorado Attorney General Gale Norton as the State's Solicitor General. In that position, he directed legal policy for the State of Colorado and was responsible for legislative matters before the Colorado General Assembly and the U.S. Congress. He also represented the State of Colorado in two cases before the U.S. Supreme Court. He returned to private practice in 1996, helping to form Hale Hackstaff Tymkovich, where he practiced in the areas of business litigation and appeals, election law, and legislative and regulatory matters. Judge Tymkovich was nominated to the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals by President George W. Bush. Congress confirmed Tymkovich in April 2003. His Chambers are located in Denver, Colorado. Judge Tymkovich serves the federal Judiciary as Chair of its Committee on Judicial Resources. The Committee is responsible for judicial vacancies and overall budget. He also is an adjunct professor of law at the University of Colorado School of law, where he teaches Election Law. He is President of the Doyle Inn of court, and a member of the American Law Institute and the International Society of Barristers. Since he joined the Circuit, Judge Tymkovich has hosted judicial delegations from Russia, Kazakhstan, and Afghanistan, and has also represented the United States in programs at Kiev and Yalta in the Ukraine.