- Hon. Irma Gonzalez; United States District Judge, Retired; San Diego, CA.
- Joan Haratani; Partner, Morgan Lewis; San Francisco, CA.
- Joyce Hughes; Professor of Law; Northwestern University School of Law; Chicago, IL.
- Pamela Karlan; Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General, Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice; Co-Director, Stanford Supreme Court Litigation Clinic, Stanford Law School, Washington, DC.
- Ellen Rosenblum; Oregon Attorney General, Oregon Department of Justice; Salem, OR.
These esteemed honorees were chosen because they carry forward the legacy of Margaret Brent. Margaret Brent was the first woman lawyer in America. She arrived in the colonies in 1638. She was a master negotiator, an accomplished litigator, and a respected leader. She was involved in 124 court cases over 8 years and won every case. In 1648, she formally demanded a “vote and voice” in the Maryland Assembly, which the governor denied. Over 250 years later, Harper’s magazine noted: “By this action, Margaret Brent undoubtedly plaed herself as the first woman in America to make a stand for the rights of her sex." View a video about Margaret Brent's life here.