Notable Diverse Alumni

The Law School has a long history of access and opportunity, and its 120-year legacy is interwoven with the journeys and accomplishments of its students and faculty. Almost immediately after the law school opened in 1899, our alumni were trailblazing new opportunities and accomplishing "firsts" across the legal landscape. We want to share a few of our notable and diverse alum to highlight their stories. They not only made significant contributions to the legal profession, but they also made significant contributions to our communities and our nation. We hope their stories inspire you.

James Randle (1904), First Black Graduate

James Randle (1904)
First Black Graduate

William E. Rodriguez (1912), First Hispanic Graduate

William E. Rodriguez (1912)
First Hispanic Graduate

Pearl Hart (1914),

Pearl Hart (1914)
“Guardian Angel of Chicago’s Gay Community”

Edith Sampson (1925), First Black U.S. Delegate to the U.N., First Black Woman Elected Judge in the U.S.

Edith Sampson (1925)
First Black U.S. Delegate to the U.N.
First Black Woman Elected Judge in the U.S.

Martha Cardwell (1927), Women’s Rights Activist

Martha Cardwell (1927)
Women’s Rights Activist

Euclid Taylor, First Black Lawyer to Teach at JMLS

Euclid Taylor
First Black Lawyer to Teach at JMLS

Paul Davis Newey (’40), Among the First Law Students of Arab Descent

Paul Davis Newey (’40)
Among the First Law Students of Arab Descent

Shelley Da Costa (’41), Author of the John Marshall School Song

Shelley Da Costa (’41)
Author of the John Marshall School Song

Chauncey Eskridge (’49), Associate Judge, Circuit Court of Cook County

Chauncey Eskridge (’49)
Associate Judge
Circuit Court of Cook County

Rep. Charles Armstrong (’51), Democrat, 22nd District, Illinois House of Representatives (1957-1965)

Rep. Charles Armstrong (’51)
Democrat, 22nd District
Illinois House of Representatives (1957-1965)

Hon. Charles Freeman (’62), First Black Justice & Black Chief, Justice Illinois Supreme Court

Hon. Charles Freeman (’62)
First Black Justice & Black Chief Justice
Illinois Supreme Court

Ralla Klepak (’64), LGBTQ Ally & Activist

Ralla Klepak (’64)
LGBTQ Ally & Activist

Mahmoud Cherif Bassiouni (LLM ’66), “Father of International Criminal Law”

Mahmoud Cherif Bassiouni (LLM ’66)
“Father of International Criminal Law”

Hon. Timothy Evans (’69), First Black Chief Judge, Circuit Court of Cook County

Hon. Timothy Evans (’69)
First Black Chief Judge
Circuit Court of Cook County

Hon. Cheryl Cesario (’81), LGBTQ Former Judge, Circuit Court of Cook County

Hon. Cheryl Cesario (’81)
LGBTQ Former Judge
Circuit Court of Cook County

Carla Barnes (’98), First Black Judge, Circuit Court of Illinois, 11th Judicial Circuit

Carla Barnes (’98)
First Black Judge
Circuit Court of Illinois, 11th Judicial Circuit