Former Chief Justice Margaret Marshall was the first woman to serve on the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court, a position that she held from 1999 until she retired in 2010. During her tenure, she worked to ensure equal access to justice for all, including our most vulnerable populations. Born and educated in South Africa, Marshall actively opposed the apartheid regime and served as the President of the National Union of South African students, a leading anti-apartheid organization. In 1968, she came to the United States on an academic scholarship. Unable to return home because of her political activism, she graduated from Harvard University with a master’s degree in education and Yale Law School and worked in private practice until the 1990s. From her early days in South Africa, Marshall has been a defender of human rights and equality for all individuals, as reflected in her judicial decisions. Margery Eagan, co-host of WGBH’s midday program Boston Public Radio, was the evening’s moderator.
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