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In 2014, Lawyers Club awarded Justice Sandra Day O'Connor the Icon Award.


Justice Sandra Day O'Connor Photo by Dane Penland, Collection of the Supreme Court of the United States
At a time when opportunities for female lawyers were virtually non-existent, Justice Sandra Day O’Connor graduated Order of the Coif from Stanford University’s law school in 1952 after having served on the Board of Editors of Stanford Law Review. From 1952 to 1953, Justice O’Connor served as the San Mateo County’s Deputy County Attorney. She then served as a Civilian Attorney for Quartermaster Market Center in Frankfurt, Germany from 1954 to 1957, and moved into private practice in Maryvale, Arizona from 1958 to 1960.  Justice O’Connor served as the Assistant Attorney General in Arizona beginning in 1965 until being appointed to the Arizona State Senate in 1969, where she was subsequently re-elected for two two-year terms, serving in the Arizona State Senate until 1975. During that time, she served as the Senate Majority leader from 1972-1975, and Chairman of the State, County and Municipal Affairs Committee in 1972 and 1973. She also had roles on the Probate Code Commission and on the Arizona Advisory Council on Intergovernmental Relations.

In 1975, Justice O’Connor was elected judge of the Maricopa County Superior Court bench in Phoenix, where she served until 1979. Four years later, then Governor Bruce Babbitt appointed her to the Arizona Court of Appeal, where she served until 1981. Justice O’Connor made history and broke glass ceilings for generations of women to come. In 1981, President Ronald Reagan nominated her to a position as Associate Justice of the United States Supreme Court, and she was unanimously confirmed by the United States Senate, serving as the Court’s first female justice. After more than three decades of forging new paths for women lawyers, Justice O’Connor retired from the Supreme Court in 2006. In recognition of her achievements,  President Obama awarded Justice O’Connor the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2009, the nation’s highest civilian honor.
Since retiring from the bench, Justice O’Connor continues to be active in community and civic organizations. She currently serves as an Executive Board member of the ABA Central European and Eurasian Law Initiative; member of the Board of Trustees for the Rockefeller Foundation; Co-chair of the Heard Museum National Advisory Council; member of the Advisory Board of the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History; member of the ABA Commission on Civic Education and Separation of Powers; member of the Executive Committee of the ABA Museum of the Law; member of the Advisory Commission of the ABA Standing Committee on the Law Library of Congress; member of the Advisory Committee of the American Society of International Law, Judicial; Co-chair of the National Advisory Council’s Campaign for the Civic Mission of Schools; and member of the Advisory Board of the Stanford Center of Ethics. She also formerly served in positions such as the Chancellor at the College of William and Mary.
Most notably, she founded and serves as current Chairperson of iCivics, a non-profit organization dedicated to reinvigorating civic learning through interactive and engaging learning resources that serve to empower teachers and prepare the next generation of students to become knowledgeable and engaged citizens. She also frequently speaks about civics education and judicial independence, and was recently named honorary chair of Justice at Stake, a nonpartisan national partnership of more than fifty organizations that focuses on keeping courts fair and impartial. 
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Lawyers Club of San Diego

402 West Broadway, Suite 1260
San Diego CA 92101
619-595-0650
info@lawyersclubsandiego.com

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