On February 3, 2023, during the ABA Midyear Meeting in New Orleans, I presided over the second post-pandemic “in-person” meeting of the National Conference of the Administrative Judiciary (NCALJ). As the first African American woman to chair the NCALJ, I am inspired by the diverse leadership roles that women hold within the ABA.
Having been part of the ABA since my law school student days (in the 1980’s), I realize that female leadership within our organization has not always been commonplace. That is why it is so noteworthy that today, ABA leadership by outstanding women now almost feels routine. During the midyear meeting, it was my pleasure to connect with current and past female JD leaders in a variety of settings, including past JD chairs Hon. Ann Breen-Greco, Hon. Bernice Donald and past ABA President Paulette Brown.
As I participated in the last "Ask a Judge” session of the Judicial Clerkship Program at Midyear, I felt very hopeful that law students of diverse genders and ethnicities from many geographical areas, portend a future where diverse voices will continue to work together for the good of our country and profession. NCALJ programming for the remainder of the 2022-2023 year will highlight citizens of diverse backgrounds and obstacles that they have had to overcome to ensure that their voices and views contributed to our democracy and legal system.