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Award-winning author to lead Feb. 25 College of Law event honoring legacy of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall

February 17, 2011

Jaclyn D. Grosso
(315) 443-9534

Syracuse University College of Law Black Law Students Association (BLSA) has organized a Black History Month program that pays tribute to the legacy of the late U.S. Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall, who was the first African American member of the Supreme Court. The program, “The Equal Justice: The Life and Legacy of Justice Thurgood Marshall,” will be held on Friday, Feb. 25, from 5:30-8:30 p.m., in Grant Auditorium in the SU College of Law. The keynote speaker is award-winning author Sheryll Cashin, who is also a professor of law at Georgetown University Law Center in Washington, D.C. The program is free and open to the public.

marshallCashin was law clerk to Justice Marshall (pictured) in 1990-91, and now teaches constitutional law, race and American law and other subjects at Georgetown University Law Center. Her most recent book, “The Agitator’s Daughter: A Memoir of Four Generations of One Extraordinary African-American Family” (Public Affairs, 2008), traces the arc of American race relations through generations of her family. Her book “The Failures of Integration” (Public Affairs, 2004) was an Editors’ Choice in the New York Times Book Review. Both of Cashin’s books were nominated for the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award for non-fiction in 2005 and 2009. Cashin will have a book signing in the Grant Auditorium atrium from 4-5:15 p.m., prior to the program.

Participants for this program include leading scholars from SU, and other local and national colleges and universities to explore the depth and breadth of Justice Marshall’s legacy. Panelists include:

  • Professor Herbert Ruffin, Syracuse University Department of African American Studies;
  • Dean Charlotte Johnson, Colgate University;
  • Professor Craig Jackson, Thurgood Marshall School of Law, Texas Southern University;
  • Professor Jenny Rivera, CUNY School of Law & American University Law School;
  • Professor Sanjay Chhablani, SU College of Law;
  • Professor Janis McDonald, SU College of Law;
  • Judge Vanessa Bogan, Syracuse City Court;
  • Larry Pinkney, author and community activist;
  • Professor Theodore Shaw, Columbia University School of Law; and
  • BLSA President Erica Laster.

This event is supported by the College of Law, the Office of Multicultural Affairs and other campus departments. For more information, contact College of Law Professor Paula Johnson; Cedric T. Bolton at; or Adom Cooper at

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