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Feinstein Announces Acting Staff Director for Judiciary Committee

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

Brest, who will oversee a staff of full-time attorneys and other professional staff members, replaces Heather Sawyer who served as staff director, chief counsel and general counsel for Feinstein since 2017.

Brest, who joined the committee in 2017, previously served as deputy staff director, senior counsel and counsel.

In making the announcement, Feinstein said: “I’m pleased to announce that Phil Brest will serve as acting staff director and chief counsel for the Judiciary Committee. Phil has held a series of positions of increasing responsibility for the committee and has repeatedly proved his ability to work under pressure and provide sound advice. I look forward to Phil’s leadership as we continue to promote our agenda through the committee’s work.”

Prior to joining the committee, Brest worked as an associate at both Covington & Burling and Sullivan & Cromwell in Washington and clerked for Justice Mariano-Florentino Cuéllar on the California Supreme Court.

Feinstein added: “I wish to thank Heather Sawyer for her work on the committee during challenging times. In addition to serving as staff director, Heather previously served as head of oversight for the committee and was a great help for a number of high-profile judicial confirmations. Heather has worked in Congress for 13 years and her service is greatly appreciated. I wish her luck in her future endeavors.”