WASHINGTON (Jan. 26)
Federal Judge William H. Webster of St. Louis, Mo., who has been nominated by President Carter to head the Federal Bureau of Investigation, said today he will respond to allegations that he is identified with organizations barring Jews, Blacks or women.
The Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith said that Webster, a member of the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals since 1973, was affiliated with the St. Louis Country Club which allegedly has barred Jews and Blacks from membership, the Noonday Club, an all white male group, and an organization known as the “Mysterious Order of the Veiled Prophets” which has been attacked by civil rights leaders as racist.
The Jewish Telegraphic Agency sought Webster’s views on the allegations and he passed word to the FBI office here that he would “address all issues” when he appears before the Senate Judiciary Committee in a confirmation hearing. An FBI spokesman said Webster has had “numerous calls” about the allegations but he would not talk with anyone until he is confirmed and sworn in.
Webster, 53, was a judge in the U.S. Eastern District of Missouri for four years before being elevated to the Appellate Court. Prior to that he was the U.S. Attorney for the District in 1959-61. He is a native of St. Louis and a graduate of Amherst and the University of Washington Law School. He served twice in the U.S. Navy during World War II and in 1949-52. He is also prominently identified with several law organizations and is a member of the Missouri Board of Law Examiners.