Obama Nominates Alumnus B. Todd Jones ('83) for U.S. Attorney
JUNE 8, 2009—President Barack Obama has announced B. Todd Jones ('83) as his nominee for U.S. Attorney for the District of Minnesota. The nomination, which must be confirmed by the full U.S. Senate, went to the Senate on June 4. If confirmed, Jones will replace acting U.S. Attorney Frank Magill, who was appointed in January 2008 to fill the position after Rachel Paulose resigned.
Jones already knows what the job involves. He served as assistant U.S. Attorney for Minnesota, responsible for daily operations of the office, for a year before being recommended for U.S. Attorney in mid-1998 by then-Senator Paul Wellstone. He was the first black U.S. attorney in Minnesota, and served until the end of January 2001.
One of his particular concentrations was white-collar crime, especially the growing problem of mortgage fraud and Ponzi schemes. He also worked with state and local law enforcement agencies to track multistate drug conspiracies and curb gun violence. U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., was Hennepin County attorney at the time and has noted Jones’ cooperation in working with local officials.
Klobuchar formed a bipartisan advisory committee of eminent Minnesota lawyers and law enforcement officials in January to help her find the best candidate for Minnesota’s next U.S. Attorney. She announced her recommendation of Jones to Obama in early March.
Jones has been with Robins, Kaplan, Miller & Ciresi since leaving the U.S. Attorney’s office in 2001, and is now a partner. Co-worker Michael Ciresi ('71) was quoted in a March 5, 2009, Star Tribune article calling Jones "well-suited for that position because of his ability, temperament, and judgment." Rick Morgan ('84), a colleague in the 1990s and a former assistant U.S. attorney, commented that he "couldn't be more pleased" with the recommendation.
After completing his undergraduate work at Macalester College, Jones obtained his J.D. at the Law School and then served on active duty in the U.S. Marine Corps until 1989. In 1991, he was recalled as a Marine Corps Reservist for Operation Desert Storm and served as the commanding officer of the fourth Marine Division Military Policy Company until his honorable discharge in 1998. Jones was a senior associate attorney at Oppenheimer, Wolff & Donnelly from 1989-92 and a managing partner at Greene Espel from 1994-97.
With his confirmation as U.S. Attorney of Minnesota, Jones would join a distinguished group of Law School alumni who have served in the office. Among them are Tom Heffelfinger ('76), Judge James M. Rosenbaum ('69), Thomas K. Berg ('65), Andrew W. Danielson ('61), Thorwald H. Anderson Jr. ('64), Hartley Nordin ('48), and Miles Lord ('48).