In an effort to encourage girls and young women to consider a career in the law, Pierce County’s Superior Court is hosting the National Association of Women Judges, Color of Justice Program, on August 17, 2017.
The one-day event seeks to encourage girls, aged 11-18 years old, to consider a career in the law and the judiciary. The program features time for the girls to meet, participate with, and observe the legal process through the eyes of female members of the judiciary. More than 80 girls from across Western Washington are registered to attend.
Pierce County Superior Court Judge G. Helen Whitener has championed and coordinated the event to connect girls from marginalized communities to female judges who can mentor and empower them. Judge Whitener, who emigrated from Trinidad & Tobago and is a member of the LGBTQ community, has been nationally recognized for her work to bring greater diversity to the judiciary.
“It is important that we create a space to foster diversity in all of its forms,” said Judge Whitener. “To the extent that diversity is not reflected in our legal system, we need to create it. That’s why I’m focused on engaging the next generation of future judges.”
More than 20 women judges from Western Washington will participate as speakers, panelists and mentors. They represent city, county, state, federal and tribal courts. Supreme Court Justice Mary Yu will be giving the keynote address titled, “How Someone Like Me Became a Justice.”
The National Association of Women Judges (NAWJ) created the original Color of Justice Event and hosts similar events across the United States.