Elizabeth A. Wolford is Chief United States District Judge for the Western District of New York. She was appointed United States District Judge for the Western District of New York by President Obama on December 17, 2013. She is the first woman to serve in this role.
Before assuming the bench, Judge Wolford practiced law for over twenty years with The Wolford Law Firm LLP, where she concentrated her practice in civil litigation, with an emphasis on commercial and employment matters. Judge Wolford is a past president of the Foundation of the Monroe County Bar (2010-2012) and the Greater Rochester Association for Women Attorneys ("GRAWA") (2003-2004). She currently serves on the Monroe County Bar Association's Board of Trustees.
In 2013, the New York State Bar Association ("NYSBA") presented Judge Wolford with its Root/Stimson Award, and in 2002 she received NYSBA's Outstanding Young Lawyer of the Year Award. Judge Wolford has also been recognized by a number of other bar associations, including the Western New York Chapter of the Women's Bar Association of the State of New York (President's Award - 2014), the Monroe County Bar Association (President's Award - 2012), and GRAWA (Hanna S. Cohn Mentoring Award - 2008, President's Award - 1999). In November 2010, she was recognized as a "Leader in the Law" by The Daily Record, and in November 2006, she received the Rochester Business Journal's Forty Under 40 Award. In 2000, she was a recipient of a Special Service Award from the Court on which she now sits, for excellence in the vigorous representation of a pro bono client.