United States President Barack Obama has nominated Solicitor General Elena Kagan as a Supreme Court justice.
Ms Kagan, 50, is a former Harvard Law School dean and has spent much of her professional life in academia.
The BBC reports she would be the youngest member and third woman on the current court, as well as the first justice in almost four decades not to have been a judge.
Republicans warned she would not receive automatic approval in the Senate, which must confirm whether she can replace retiring Justice John Paul Stevens, who is considered one of the court's leading liberals.
Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell said Ms Kagan's "brief litigation experience" would be reviewed.