Lorna G. Schofield


Distinguished Alumni Service Award (2016)
Indiana University Bloomington
Distinguished Asian/Pacific American Alumni Award (2016)


As the first federal judge, under Article III of the U.S. Constitution, of Filipino-American descent, the Hon. Lorna G. Schofield is hailed as a trailblazing figure in the field of law and for women of Asian descent.

She was nominated to the bench in 2012 by President Barack Obama and unanimously confirmed by the U.S. Senate, serving in one of the busiest courts in America, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, seated in lower Manhattan.

Prior to her appointment, Schofield was a highly successful lawyer and partner in the international firm of Debevoise & Plimpton, an assistant U.S. attorney in the criminal division of the Southern District of New York, and an associate at Cleary Gottlieg Steen & Hamilton. She is a former chair of the American Bar Association's Section of Litigation.

Her practice focused on litigation in complex commercial matters, including the defense of companies and individuals in regulatory and white-collar criminal investigations. She successfully defended TV celebrity Rosie O'Donnell, whose publishers sued her for $300 million over her decision to terminate her interest in Rosie magazine after the company attempted to seize editorial control from her.

In addition to receiving IU's highest alumni accolade, Schofield will be honored with the 2016 Distinguished Asian/Pacific American Alumni Award to recognize her impact on the legal profession and the Asian community both at IU and beyond. The IU Asian Alumni Association is an affiliate group of the IU Alumni Association.

Schofield earned her bachelor's degree at IU before attaining a law degree from New York University, where she was editor of the New York University Law Review. In 2013, she was selected for the inaugural cohort of College Luminaries for IU's College of Arts and Sciences.