Attorney General Eric Holder today welcomed the confirmation by the U.S. Senate of Tony West as the Department of Justice's Associate Attorney General.
"Tony has served with distinction since he returned to the Justice Department in 2009," said Attorney General Holder. "As a key member of the department's senior management team, he has led with integrity, acting always in the best interests of the American people and in accordance with the finest traditions of public service. I applaud his confirmation by the U.S. Senate today, and look forward to continuing to work with him as Associate Attorney General -- a role in which he has excelled, in an acting capacity, for more than a year."
President Barack Obama nominated Tony West to be the Associate Attorney General of the United States, the third-ranking official at the Department of Justice, on Sept. 20, 2012. Mr. West has served as the Acting Associate Attorney General since March of 2012. Previously, he was nominated by the President to be the Assistant Attorney General for the Justice Department's Civil Division, a position that he held between April 20, 2009 and March 12, 2012.
Mr. West's primary responsibility as the Associate Attorney General is to advise and assist the Attorney General and the Deputy Attorney General in formulating and implementing departmental policies and programs related to a broad range of issues, including civil litigation, federal and local law enforcement, and public safety.
As Associate Attorney General, Mr. West oversees the department's civil litigating components (Antitrust Division, Civil Division, Civil Rights Division, Environment and Natural Resources Division, and Tax Division), grant-making components (Office of Justice Programs, Office on Violence Against Women, and Office of Community Oriented Policing Services), and related components (Community Relations Service, Executive Office of U.S. Trustees, Office of Information Policy and Foreign Settlement Claims Commission). Mr. West serves as the Co-Chair of the President's Task Force on Puerto Rico, the Vice Chair of the Steering Committee of the President's Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force, and the federal government's Chief FOIA Officer.
During his current tenure in Justice Department leadership, Mr. West has taken an active role in coordinating the department's response to the Deepwater Water Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico; overseeing comprehensive immigration reform; combating financial fraud through enforcement actions such as the department's lawsuit against Standard & Poor's Ratings Services; improving public safety by enhancing partnerships between federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement; championing the voices of crime victims, children, and the elderly; promoting the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act; and improving the federal government's relationship with Native American communities.
From April 2009 to March 2012, Mr. West served as the Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Division, which is the largest litigating division in the Department of Justice. In addition to focusing on traditional areas of the Civil Division's work, Mr. West helped the department further its most important priority -- protecting national security. He also bolstered the division's affirmative civil enforcement efforts in areas such as health care fraud, mortgage fraud, and procurement fraud to recover taxpayer money lost to fraud and abuse, resulting in unprecedented monetary recoveries. Mr. West similarly emphasized the Civil Division's authority to bring civil and criminal actions to enforce the nation's consumer protection laws, and served in various positions on the Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force.
Mr. West first joined the Department of Justice a year after graduating from law school when he served as a Special Assistant to the Deputy Attorney General from 1993 through 1994. From 1994 to 1999, he was an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Northern District of California. From 1999 to 2001, Mr. West served as a state Special Assistant Attorney General in California. Prior to returning to the Justice Department, Mr. West was a litigation partner at Morrison & Foerster LLP in San Francisco.
Mr. West graduated with honors from Harvard College, where he served as publisher of the Harvard Political Review, and received his law degree from Stanford Law School, where he was elected President of the Stanford Law Review.