Monday, October 3, 2005

Civil Rights Trailblazer, Honorable Constance Baker Motley, Dies

Constance Baker Motley

"The first African-American woman to serve in the New York State Senate (in 1964), the first woman elected as Manhattan Borough President (in 1965), the first candidate for that office to win the endorsements of the Republican, Democratic, and Liberal Parties, Motley was also the first black woman appointed to the federal judiciary, when President Lyndon Johnson chose her to serve on the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York in 1966. Here on the largest federal trial bench in the country, she became the first woman to serve as chief judge, in 1982, and in 1986 she assumed senior status. Thinking back on her career, Motley is amazed at the increase in the number of women in positions of power today. A celebrated civil rights attorney, she is also proud of her hard-fought battles to end racial discrimination."

Read a New York Times article published September 28, 2005 by Douglas Martin
Read Washington File Press Release 29 September 2005