Press Releases

Washington—Senate Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) today announced the appointment of Heather Sawyer as staff director and chief counsel of the committee.

            Sawyer will oversee a staff of full-time attorneys, professional staff and law clerks as well as temporary attorneys and staff for special projects. Sawyer replaces Jennifer Duck, who has served as Feinstein’s chief counsel, chief of staff and staff director for the senator over 11 years.

            Most recently, Sawyer served as general counsel on the Judiciary Committee for Senator Feinstein, assisting in the development and implementation of legislative and investigative plans. Before that she served as staff director and general counsel for Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky, as ranking member on the House Energy and Commerce Committee’s Select Investigative Panel. Sawyer has also worked for Representatives Elijah Cummings, John Conyers and Jerrold Nadler.

            In making the announcement, Feinstein said: “I’m pleased to announce that Heather Sawyer will serve as staff director and chief counsel for the Judiciary Committee. I’ve worked closely with Heather for almost three years. Her ability to perform under pressure is impressive, whether during the Russia investigation, the judicial nomination process or confirmation of two Supreme Court nominees. She has a great amount of experience on Capitol Hill and significant legal and policy expertise. I look forward to her counsel and leadership as we continue to promote our agenda through the committee’s work.”

            Prior to coming to Congress, Sawyer served as assistant director of Georgetown University Law Center’s Federal Legislation Clinic, a senior counsel at Lambda Legal and an associate at Schiff Hardin.

            Feinstein added: “I want to thank Jennifer Duck for more than a decade of service to me in the Senate in three different senior positions. Jennifer is smart, strategic and believes deeply in the work of Congress, and she will be missed. She exhibits a combination of legislative expertise and intense passion that is a good model for all her colleagues. I wish her great luck in her new position and am certain she will go far.”