Celebrating African American History Month

As each president has since 1996, President Obama proclaimed February as National African American History Month.  This year’s theme is “Black Women in American Culture and History.”  In honor of this celebration, below are the names of a few of the African American women who have been pioneers in the legal profession:

Viloette M. Anderson First African American woman lawyer to practice before the U.S. Supreme Court (1926)
Jane M. Bolin FirstAfrican American graduate of Yale Law School (1931) and the first to become a judge (1939)
Lani Guinier First tenured African American woman professor at Harvard Law School (1998)
Amalya Kearse First African American woman appointed to a United States Court of Appeals (1979)
Constance B. Motley First African American woman appointed to the Federal Judiciary (1966)
Charlotte E. Ray First African American woman to become an attorney (1872)

To learn more about National African American History Month, please visit the Library of Congress website here.