Former Sen. Jesse Helms and Sen. John Edwards held up previous nominations. But now Helms' successor, Elizabeth Dole, and Edwards agree on a nominee.
She's Allyson Duncan, who spoke to WRAL's David Crabtree during lunch Thursday with her friend, Sen. Dole.
"It's big," Dole said of Duncan's nomination. "It's a very important time."
Said Duncan: "I'm very honored."
Duncan is the president of the State Bar Association. A Duke graduate and former judge, Duncan practices law in Raleigh. She once taught at North Carolina Central's law school, carrying on a family tradition.
"My mother taught at the law school at N.C. Central for over 20 years," Duncan said. "She taught a number of people -- Frank Ballance, Mickey Micheaux."
If confirmed, Duncan would become the first African-American female to serve on the 4th Circuit.
"Just the prospect of serving on it is almost outside the range of my expectations," Duncan said.
Over dessert, the 51-year-old Republican called her nomination "awe inspiring" and "a dream come true.
"It truly is," she said. "That's why awe inspiring is not too strong a term. Even more than exciting because it is the pinnacle of a legal career."
Hearings on the Duncan nomination could start before the end of summer.
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