About SCDJ

Who We Are

The Judicial Division Standing Committee on Minorities in the Judiciary, created in 1987, provides a catalyst to promote equal participation of minorities in the profession through educational experiences, outreach opportunities and numerous publications. The committee presents CLE programs, student outreach programs and prints the Minority Judges Directory .  The Committee is dedicated to keeping a diverse judiciary in the mind of the public and the legal profession. 

The Standing Committee has 12 members, consisting of a Chair and five at-large members appointed by the Judicial Division Chair, plus one member from each of the six Judicial Division conferences appointed by the Conference Chairs. In addition, the Standing Committee has liaisons from the ABA Law Student Division and the National Association for Law Placement. Each member is appointed for a three-year term.

View our Committee Members

Our Mission

To promote the full participation by minority judges in the judicial system, while attracting minority judges into the ABA.

Diversity Action Plan

The Standing Committee on Minorities in the Judiciary operates under an ongoing Action Plan.

Judical Division Diversity Action Plan

History of the Standing Committe on Minorities in the Judiciary

The ABA Judicial Division Standing Committee on Minorities in the Judiciary was created in 1987 by Judge Martha Craig "Cissy" Daughtrey, then-chair of the Division, as a means of providing a catalyst for promoting the full participation by minority judges in the judicial system, while attracting minority judges into the ABA. It was designed to compliment what was then known as the ABA Commission on Racial and Ethnic Diversity in the Profession, which was created as a catalyst for promoting the full participation in the legal profession by minority lawyers and attracting minority lawyers to the ABA.

The Standing Committee, then known as the Task Force on Opportunities for Minorities in the Judicial Administration Division, began by undertaking a study to identify problems typically faced by minority judges. From that study, the Standing Committee developed a comprehensive Action Plan designed to address the problems with practical, far-reaching solutions.

Chief among the problems of minority judges has been, and continues to be, the isolation experienced where few, if any, colleagues are minorities. Other problems have included few teaching, lecturing and public speaking assignments, the lack of meaningful professional alliances and the absence of strategies and resources to retain judicial seats after appointment. In addition, minority judges have not had the opportunity to become involved in structured mentoring activities in large numbers. Finally, minority judges have not typically received the respect of the bar and of colleagues that majority judges have enjoyed.

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