Colorado lost a universally admired federal judge this week. Judge Philip Figa has died of brain cancer at age 56.Colorado Congresswoman Diana DeGette released a tribute to Judge Figa Wednesday which will be entered in the Congressional Record when Congress resumes. She describes his accomplishments and the bi-partisan support for his appointment to the federal bench.

During the confirmation process, Senators of both parties viewed him as highly intelligent and a fair prospective jurist. Many friends, family and associates have praised Judge Figa as “even handed” . . . “smart, caring and authentic” . . . “a great jurist” . . . “a true humanitarian” . . . “one who brought passion and integrity to the field of law ” . . . ” a humble and gracious man who genuinely cared about helping other people.”

The tribute concludes by noting:

Judge Figa lived a life that is rich in consequence and our country is a better place because of his labors. Truly, we are all diminished by the all too early passing of this remarkable gentleman,

The Anti-Defamation League will posthumously present Judge Figa, the son of Holocaust survivors who was passionate about Holocaust awareness and denial, with the Distinguished Community Service Award “for his commitment to human rights and dignity, and his dedicated service to his community, state and nation” on February 4, 2008.