Judge James A. Beaty, Jr. will retire from the court on January 31, 2018, after having been a United States District Judge since November 1, 1994, serving as chief judge of the court from 2006-2012, and as a Senior Judge since June 30, 2014. He also served as a member of the Judicial Council for the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals and was appointed by the Chief Justice to serve as a member of the Judicial Conference’s Space and Facility Committee. Before becoming a federal judge, Judge Beaty was a Resident Superior Court Judge for the 21st Judicial District (Forsyth County) for 13 years.
Judge Beaty graduated from Western Carolina University with honors in 1971 and received his law degree in 1974 from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He was in private practice with the late Judge Richard C. Erwin, who was Judge Beaty's predecessor on the federal bench. He has been active in community affairs, including service on the Boards of Big Brothers/Big Sisters, Salvation Army Girls Advisory Club, Old Hickory Council of the Boy Scouts of America, Senior Services of Forsyth County, and the New Winston Museum.
"We and the Nation have been fortunate to have the benefit of Judge Beaty's service as a judge," Chief Judge Thomas D. Schroeder stated. "He led this court through challenging times, and we are grateful for his leadership." "On behalf of all the judges, we thank him for his service and wish him and his family all the best in his retirement."