Historic Confirmation

WWCDA applauds the historic U.S. Senate confirmation of former WWCDA member
– The Honorable Ketanji Brown Jackson –
as Justice of the United States Supreme Court.

Ketanji Brown Jackson

Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson’s confirmation to the U.S. Supreme Court heralds two groundbreaking firsts – she is the first Black woman and first former public defender to become a Supreme Court Justice. This monumental achievement by Justice Jackson, a former WWCDA member, is a continued progression of her lifelong commitment to the pursuit of equal justice under the law.

A graduate of Harvard University and Harvard Law School, Justice Jackson clerked in the District of Massachusetts and the First Circuit before clerking for Justice Stephen Breyer. Justice Jackson worked in private practice from 2000 to 2003, and served as an assistant special counsel to the U.S. Sentencing Commission from 2003 to 2005.  She then served as an assistant federal public defender in Washington, D.C. from 2005-2007, and worked at Morrison & Foerster from 2007-2010.  Justice Jackson was a member of WWCDA during her last stint in private practice.

Justice Jackson returned to public service as Vice Chair and Commissioner on the U.S. Sentencing Commission in 2010.  In 2013, she was nominated by President Barack Obama and Senate-confirmed as a U.S. District Court Judge for the District of Columbia. 

Justice Jackson was confirmed on June 14, 2021 to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, ending a nearly ten-year gap since the Senate’s last confirmation of a Black woman to serve on a federal appeals court.

Long-considered to be on President Joe Biden’s short list of nominees to the U.S. Supreme Court, on February 25, 2022, President Biden nominated Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson to the seat to be vacated by retiring Justice Stephen Breyer, bringing her full circle back to the Court where she toiled long hours as a law clerk.  After a four-day confirmation hearing, Justice Jackson – a former WWCDA member – was confirmed on Thursday, April 7, 2022, increasing the number of women Justices to a record-shattering four and charting history by making Justice Jackson the first Black woman to serve on the U.S. Supreme Court.

WWCDA is proud that Justice Jackson was an active member and is a long-time supporter of our organization.  Last year, Justice Jackson participated in a WWCDA program - Raising our Hands: Seeking Appointments in the Biden/Harris Administration – where she and fellow panelists, Sarah R. Saldaña, Carmen Ortiz, and Kate Shaw, shared their remarkable career paths. They also encouraged women, particularly women of color, to seek judicial appointments and other high-level Presidential appointed positions.

Justice Jackson is an inspiration to all of us.  WWCDA congratulates the new Justice and celebrates this historic milestone.  Thank you, Justice Jackson, for shattering glass ceilings and helping other women ascend to the highest reaches of the legal profession.