Hernán G. Pesquera (1972-1982)

Hernan G.  Pesquera  (1972-1982)Judge Hernán G. Pesquera was born in Santurce, Puerto Rico on May 25, 1924. His parents were Angel Pesquera and Inés Guillermety. They had four sons, Angel, Gilberto Víctor (Kiko), Jorge Mario, Hernán Gregorio, and a daughter, Inés María. Judge Pesquera married Sonia Marty on August 22, 1951. They had four children: Sonia Inés, María Margarita, Hernán Gerardo, and Isabel. After graduating from the Central High School in 1940, he attended the University of Puerto Rico, obtaining a B.A. in 1944. In 1948, he attained his LL.B. from Cornell Law School. He was admitted to the Puerto Rico Bar on September 19, 1949.

Judge Pesquera served in the United States Army from 1944 to 1946. He was a Platoon Sergeant, and also attended the Officers Candidate School from May 1944 to February 1945, when he received his commission as a Second Lieutenant. He was honorably discharged from active duty as a First Lieutenant. After his active service, he was a member of the United States Army Reserve from June 1946 until he retired as a Lieutenant Colonel in 1973. He received the Army's Meritorious Service Medal on his retirement. The United States Army Reserve Center in Juana Diaz, Puerto Rico, is named after Judge Pesquera.

President Richard M. Nixon nominated Judge Pesquera to the federal court in Puerto Rico to a seat vacated by Judge Juan B. Fernández-Badillo, who had assumed senior status on June 30, 1972. At the time of his nomination in 1972, Judge Pesquera enjoyed the endorsement of both the Puerto Rico and American Bar Associations.

Before taking the bench, he had been active in private practice for almost 23 years. From September 1949 to January 1950, he worked in the Law Offices of Luis E. Dubón in Santurce, leaving to become the Assistant to the General Counsel of the Puerto Rico Transportation Authority, from January 1950 to August 1951. He then became the Manager and General Counsel of the Puerto Rico Wholesale Merchants Association from August 1951 to June 1952. He left to join the San Juan law firm Géigel, Silva & Pesquera from June 1952 to 1972. Pesquera did most of the trial work in the office, almost on a daily basis, in the local and federal courts.

He was confirmed by the Senate on October 12, 1972, and received his commission on October 17, 1972. He became Chief Judge on February 3, 1980 upon the death of Chief Judge José Víctor Toledo. Judge Pesquera was Chief Judge until his death on September 8, 1982 at age 59.

Judge Pesquera was known for his hard work in the course of his duties, the learning, competence, integrity and good judgment which he brought to his decisions, and his spritely presence. He was an eminent lawyer and judge, a counselor to other judges in the fullest meaning of the word . . . containing wisdom, sense and kindness. As a judge, he was perceived as witty, meticulous, analytical, and hard working. He was intense and humble . . . a truly warm person with a great sense of humor . . . a gregarious man who loved the company of others.

Judge Pesquera enjoyed teaching Federal Jurisdiction, Criminal Procedure and Federal Practice at the Pontifical Catholic University Law School in Ponce, which he did since 1976. The ABA awards the Hernán G. Pesquera Award to the outstanding student in Federal Jurisdiction at the Eugenio María de Hostos Law School in Mayaguez, Puerto Rico.