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Minnesota

Federal courthouse in Minneapolis

named after Judge Murphy

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The federal courthouse in Minneapolis is being named after a judge who is seen as a trailblazer in the Twin Cities legal community.

Judge Diana Murphy was the first woman appointed to the federal bench in Minnesota in 1980, and later became the first woman to sit on the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals. She died last year at the age of 84.

In a landmark case, Murphy ruled in 1994 that the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe retained hunting and fishing rights outlined in an 1837 treaty. The state of Minnesota appealed, but the U.S. Supreme Court upheld Murphy’s decision.

Margaret Chutich, a Minnesota Supreme Court justice who worked as a law clerk for Murphy in the mid-1980s, told Minnesota Public Radio News that Murphy always did the best she could with the facts and law she had.