Polite, a native of New Orleans, is a De La Salle Graduate, was nominated by President Obama to fill the vacancy left by the abrupt resignation of former U.S. Attorney Jim Letten.
Letten resigned following revelations that senior prosecutors in his office were anonymously blogging on a local news website about open cases and investigations.
Sen. Mary Landrieu nominated Polite for the position, and has asked her Senate colleagues to confirm Polite.
"With the backing of our local community, the President and now the Senate Judiciary Committee, Mr. Polite’s qualifications are without question. I call on my colleagues to confirm Mr. Polite without delay so he can get to work for the people of the Eastern District," Landrieu said.
Dana Boente has been the interim U.S. Attorney running the office since Letten resigned in December of last year.
The following bio information on Polite was provided by Sen. Landrieu's office:
Throughout his career as a federal prosecutor, criminal defense attorney, and corporate litigator, Mr. Polite’s experience includes jury trials, internal investigations, regulatory and administrative proceedings, and extensive motion practice. A New Orleans native, Mr. Polite currently serves as an attorney with Liskow and Lewis, where he practices in the areas of business litigation, appellate advocacy, government investigations and white-collar criminal defense. Prior to joining Liskow, Mr. Polite served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, where served as lead counsel in numerous investigations and prosecutions of federal criminal offenses, including bribery, extortion, narcotics trafficking, money laundering, and identity theft. In addition to several jury trial convictions in the areas of public corruption and organized crime, Mr. Polite’s experience as a federal prosecutor includes successfully briefing and arguing several cases before the Second Circuit Court of Appeals. Prior to serving as an Assistant U.S. Attorney, Mr. Polite practiced for six years in the New York office of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP. A graduate of Harvard University, and cum laude graduate of Georgetown University Law Center, Mr. Polite clerked for the Honorable Thomas L. Ambro, Circuit Judge, United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit.
Mr. Polite represents a true success story for the city of New Orleans. He was born at Charity Hospital to teenage parents, reared during his early childhood by family and caregivers in the Calliope and Lafitte housing projects, and raised in the Lower Ninth Ward. Despite their humble beginnings, Mr. Polite’s family taught him that education would be the only path out of poverty. Following his formative years at Epiphany Elementary School, Mr. Polite attended De La Salle High School in New Orleans, where each year he won a competitively-awarded full academic scholarship. Among his numerous distinctions and awards, Mr. Polite was named Student Body President, Louisiana Boys State Governor, and Class Valedictorian, the first African-American to attain that distinction in the school’s history.
Mr. Polite is active in the local community, serving in leadership positions for a variety of regional organizations, including the New Orleans Public Belt Railroad Commission, Breakthrough New Orleans, the Louisiana State Civil Service Commission, Young Leadership Council, the Pro Bono Project, and the New Orleans College Prep Charter School.