Among the group of black women attorneys from Florida who were sworn in at the Supreme Court of the United States recently are Jamaican Americans: Judge Maxine Williams (second left); attorney Alison Smith (fifth left); Judge Cymonie Rowe (eighth left); and attorney Lisa Quarrie (second right). They are posing below the portrait of Justice Thurgood Marshall, the first black judge of the SCOTUS.
One of the exciting highlights of Black History Month in the United States was the swearing in of five Jamaican-American women, among others, allowing them to make appearances before the Supreme Court of the US (SCOTUS) in Washington, DC.
The trailblazing women, most from Palm Beach County, Florida, are attorney Alison Smith, first black woman to be elected president of the nearly century-old Broward County Bar Association; Circuit Judge Maxine Cheesman; Judge Maxine Williams; Circuit Judge Cymonie Rowe; and attorney Lisa Quarrie.
Appropriately, the prestigious swearing-in ceremony was attended by the most recent and first black woman judge of the SCOTUS, Ketanji Brown Jackson. Justice Brett Kavanaugh also attended.
The women then took keepsake photos under the ‘watchful eye’ (portrait) of the late Justice Thurgood Marshall, the first black US Supreme Court judge, and Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, known for her legendary campaign for women’s equality.
Smith, who grew up in St Elizabeth and Manchester, Jamaica, said the swearing-in was preceded by “a rigorous application process starting basically a year out, filling out all sorts of paperwork, undergoing background checks and the like.
“Which is why you have even judges who have been practising for a long time doing it so much later in their careers.”
Jamaican-born Florida-based attorneys Alison Smith (left) and retired judge Lona Holmes at a SCOTUS pre-swearing in reception in Washington, DC.
Attorney Alison Smith (left) keeps company with US colleague attorney Destinie Baker-Sutton at the pre-ceremony reception.
First black executive director of the US National League of Cities Clarence Anthony plays host to Jamaican American Alison Smith, who was among the black women sworn in at the US Supreme Court during Black History Month.
Attorney Alison Smith (left), first black president of the Broward County Bar Association in Florida and Circuit Judge Maxine Cheesman.