KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) – In a 53-47 vote, U.S Senators affirmed President Joe Biden’s Supreme Court pick. It was one that made history as Ketanji Brown Jackson will become the first Black woman to serve on the nation’s highest court.
“Somebody always has to be the one to break the barrier. Now, young Black girls – they have a road map,” Cashauna Lattimore, fourth judicial district asst. public defender said.
With a background full of experience, Jackson has served as a U.S. District judge, a D.C. Court of Appeals Judge and a federal public defender.
“She has more litigation experience than the vast majority of the folks who are serving and those who have previously served,” she said.
Even though Lattimore said Jackson’s resumé separates her from many, she knows there’s work to be done. However, learning about Jackson’s journey to the highest court excites those in the field of law, like Lattimore and others in East Tennessee.
“I have followed Justice Jackson’s career. Her dedication to excellence has always impressed me. She has conducted herself with absolute professionalism. She is a role model. I believe many people will continue to look up to her and strive for excellence.”Knox County Assistant District Attorney Takisha Fitzgerald
For others they’re inspired. Eboni James is a young attorney who aspires to be a judge and she says seeing this moment come to fruition, it inspires her in more ways than one.
“I felt seen through her,” she said. “As a Black woman I felt encouraged to wear my braids, wear my hair the way it grows out of my head and understand that although it may not be perceived well by the majority, look at what Judge Jackson was able to do, and not just this but her entire career,” James said.
It’s a first that many will remember, and someone who shares the title of ‘being the first,’ Theotis Robinson Jr., the first Black University of Tennessee student said this can’t be the end.
“It’s nice to be first, but you don’t want to be the last,” he said. “You want to see others to be able to follow in that pathway and to achieve that level of service within our country and in her case, that service within our government.
Jackson is set to take office in June or July.