Richard Seeborg was nominated on August 6, 2009 by President Obama to serve as a United States District Judge for the Northern District of California. The United States Senate confirmed Judge Seeborg’s nomination on December 24, 2009 and he received his commission on January 24, 2010. Judge Seeborg maintains his chambers and courtroom in San Francisco, California. Judge Seeborg served as a Magistrate Judge for the Northern District of California, San Jose Division from February 2001 until his appointment as a District Judge.
Judge Seeborg graduated from Yale College in 1978 and from Columbia Law School in 1981. From 1981 to 1982 he served as a law clerk to the Honorable John H. Pratt in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia. Following his clerkship, Judge Seeborg joined the law offices of Morrison & Foerster in San Francisco, becoming a partner in the firm in 1987. From 1991 to 1998, Judge Seeborg served as an Assistant United States Attorney in San Jose, California, handling federal criminal prosecutions. In 1998, he rejoined Morrison & Foerster as a partner in the firm’s Palo Alto, California office and served in that capacity until his appointment as a Magistrate Judge in 2001.
Judge Seeborg has participated in numerous rule of law projects around the world and for several years served on the adjunct faculty at Santa Clara University School of Law. He served as the chair of the U.S. Judicial Conference Committee on the Magistrate Judge System from 2015 to 2018 and for six years was a member of the Ninth Circuit Jury Instruction Committee. Concurrent with his duties as a federal district judge, since January, 2018 Judge Seeborg has served as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the Republic of the Marshall Islands. On February 1, 2021, Judge Seeborg succeeded to the position of Chief Judge of the Northern District of California.