Judge Esther Salas, New Jersey U.S. District Court

Judge Esther Salas

New Jersey U.S. District Court 

Esther Salas was born in December 1968 in Monterey Park, California. She earned an undergraduate degree from Rutgers University and received her Juris Doctor from Rutgers University School of Law. She clerked at the Superior Court of New Jersey before entering private practice. 

She served nine years as an Assistant Federal Public Defender for the District of New Jersey. 

She was selected to serve as a U.S. Magistrate Judge on the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey where she spent five years. She was nominated by President Barack Obama to serve as a federal district judge on the same court. Her nomination expired without action, and President Obama renominated her. She was confirmed by a voice vote of the Senate and received her commission in June 2011. 

She is married to Mark A. Anderl and they had a son, now deceased.  

In the News…

Last week, the Senate unanimously passed a bill to extend police protections to the families of the Supreme Court Justices. Now, Judge Esther Salas of the District of New Jersey is asking Congress to expand those protections for all judges nationwide. 

Judge Salas herself survived an assassination attempt but lost her son in the attack. She was presiding over a lawsuit related to convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein when a gunman disguised as a delivery driver showed up at her New Jersey home and opened fire. Salas’ son, 20-year-old Daniel, was shot and killed after he answered the door.  Salas’ husband, defense attorney Mark Anderl, was also shot but survived. The suspect was later found dead from what appeared to be a self-inflicted gunshot wound. 

“Daniel was murdered over 21 months and 18 days ago and Daniel’s bill, the Danial Judicial Security and Privacy Act, has been in limbo,” Judge Salas said. “Yet now we see efforts by Congress, bipartisan efforts, to push protections through for the Supreme Court justices, which they should be doing. But they did that in less than a week. And it looks like it will pass the House.“ 

The judge continued, “I commend them for doing that but I also say to them that federal judges everywhere, federal judges, the lower federal courts stand on the front lines of democracy and we’ve been literally taking the fire for months now, years now.” She went on to say, “And nothing is being done to protect us. We stand at the front line for democracy and we all, justices and federal court judges at all levels, need to be protected. Democracy demands this. Our Constitution demands this. The time is now. What else do we need? More deaths?” 

Contact this Leader…

Did you pray for Judge Salas today? You can let her know at:

The Honorable Esther Salas 
U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey 
Martin Luther King Jr. Federal Bldg. and U.S. Courthouse 
50 Walnut Street 
Newark, NJ 07102


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