Introduction: The Women at the United States Supreme Court
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INTRODUCTION: THE WOMEN AT THE UNITED STATES SUPREME COURT
I am Bryant Garth, the Dean of Southwestern Law School during the Women at the United States Supreme Court program hosted at the school on February 24, 2012. One of the privileges of being Dean is that I was able to welcome our community to this splendid event, which kicked off a remarkable day at this law school. We were celebrating our centennial, and we have come a very long way from the period when Southwestern was established. But this school has also stayed true to its roots. It is now my privilege to introduce the published version of this event.
The first classes at Southwestern contained disadvantaged minorities, immigrants, and others who would not have had the possibility of getting a legal education if Southwestern had not been established. And in particular, we celebrate the fact that our very first graduate was a woman. And not only was she a woman, but she made waves in the legal profession. Betty Trier Berry, the first graduate in 1915, went on to be the first woman to serve as a public defender in the United States.1
This centennial occasion reminded us of our early mission and our continuing commitment to challenge discrimination and unequal access to the legal profession. We began the day with this extraordinary panel moderated by Mary Alice Williams2 on Women at the United States Supreme Court. The panel, organized by Southwestern's wonderful Professor Judy Sloan, comprised Sandra Day O'Connor,