BISMARCK: Earlier today in brief letter to President Biden, United States Attorney Drew Wrigley resigned his office, effective February 28, 2021. Wrigley is the 19th Presidentially appointed United States Attorney in North Dakota history, and has been serving since being confirmed by the United States Senate in April of 2019. He previously served as the 17th United States Attorney, from 2001-2009.
Mr. Wrigley has served as United States Attorney for a combined total of ten years, and is the only North Dakotan to have been twice presidentially appointed United States Attorney and confirmed by the United States Senate.
The Department of Justice informed our office that, effective upon Mr. Wrigley’s resignation, current First Assistant United States Attorney Nick Chase will serve as the Acting United States Attorney, under the Vacancy Reform Act. Acting United States Attorneys serve until such time as a new United States Attorney is nominated by the President and confirmed by the United States Senate. Mr. Chase is an honors graduate of Minot State University, and the University of North Dakota Law School. He served two federal judicial clerkships, for United States Magistrate Judge Karen Klein and United States Circuit Court Judge Myron Bright, worked in private practice in the Fargo-Moorhead area, then Minneapolis, before he was hired in 2002 as an Assistant United States Attorney in Fargo
Statement of United States Attorney Drew Wrigley:
My heart is full of gratitude for having had the opportunity to serve my nation and state as United States Attorney. I thank each of the federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement agencies, and the full array of government agencies and private stakeholder groups that strengthen the efforts of our office’s Civil and Criminal Divisions. I offer a special thanks to each individual or entity who has cooperated with our investigations or civil suits, especially the victims of crime. It has been a privilege to help shoulder the trust you placed in the United States Attorney’s office.
I thank President George W. Bush for first appointing me United States Attorney in 2001, and I appreciate the willingness of then-Senators Kent Conrad and Byron Dorgan to assist my unanimous confirmation in the United States Senate. I thank President Donald J. Trump for again appointing me United States Attorney in 2019, and I deeply appreciate the work of Senators John Hoeven and Kevin Cramer to secure my nomination and unanimous confirmation vote. They and their extraordinary staff were steadfast.
It has been my profound honor to serve with the civil division, criminal division, and administrative staff of the United States Attorney’s office. These men and women are dedicated, ethical public servants, and they are patriots who love our nation. We shared the privilege of pursuing justice every day, and I am so fortunate to have been able to serve as their colleague and leader.
Together, our office made tremendous progress on priorities like civil rights, violent crime, financial crime, Internet crimes against children, civil litigation defense of the United States, gun crimes, and narcotics trafficking on our Native American reservations. Internally as an office, we made tremendous strides on budget reprioritization, attorney and non-attorney hiring practices, transparency, salary structure and advancement, and the year-long battle with the COVID19 pandemic, during which we experienced no community spread in either of our two staffed offices.
Special thanks is also due for my family, dear friends, and closest associates. Their love, their support, and their constructive criticism have made the hard work and difficult decisions possible. They have also made every bright day even brighter.
It is with a deep sense of love and appreciation that I announce my departure as the United States Attorney. It has been the professional honor of my lifetime to stand before federal courts and begin the proceedings with these words: “Thank you, your honor; Drew Wrigley for the United States.” Today and always, I offer my profound thanks to all who allowed me to share their journey.”