Officially Speaking

Vol. 40 No. 6

By

Tremaine Reese is Chair of the ABA Law Student Division

 

Learning From Our Past to Advance the Future

In February the country pauses to reflect on and celebrate the African American race. It’s a moment where we as Americans get a chance to marvel over the strides that we have made as a country in terms of acceptance.

Diversity is what made this country great and diversity will continue to be the cornerstone of America’s greatness. In the spirit of progression, we must continue to stress the importance of diversity. Maya Angelou stated, “It is time for parents to teach young people early on that in diversity there is beauty and there is strength.” The American Bar Association, as a whole, has been at the forefront of diversity initiatives and incorporation.

The Law Student Division has made diversity a central focus of our organization. We have spearheaded an annual, national diversity event during the spring semester, providing diverse resources for law students who request help in certain areas. This year particularly, the Division’s Board of Governors has taken additional steps to make diversity a priority in our administration. We have held a number of calls and meetings with the National Hispanic Bar Association Law Student Division and the National Black Law Student Association. We also provided avenues for representatives from each group to attend the Board of Governors meeting and strategize with the entire team on how we can work together on more projects.

The Honorable Dennis Archer, the first African American president of the ABA, stated after he was elected in 2002, “I am here because of the hard work of others; others who were denied the opportunities that I have had. People who broke barriers and opened doors, who paved the way for me . . . William Hastie, Damon Keith, Charles Hamilton Houston, Constance Baker Motely, Wade McCree, and Mr. Justice Thurgood Marshall. I think of the tremendous contributions these lawyers and others could have made to this association had they been allowed to join.” Today we enjoy the benefit of bright minds from all walks of life on unprecedented levels.

The Law Student Division invites you to join us in this celebration. Use this moment to give back to your local and law school community in the spirit of diversity. The Law Student Division will be hosting diversity-related events all across the country during the months of February and March. Contact your local Student Bar Association or your local Black Law Student Association chapter to be a part of this exciting time. If you would like to host an event and need ideas, please do not hesitate to reach out to the Law Student Division. We are the future and we can set an enhanced tone of solidarity in coming years.

 

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