I'm proud to see that we no longer have to wait on an African American becoming the chief justice of the Louisiana Supreme Court! Justice Bernette Johnson received legal clearance to become the next Chief Justice of the Louisiana Supreme Court. The New Orleans-based judge would also become the first African American chief justice in Louisiana.
It is a shame that she had to go to court to clear the way for her to assume her place in history. But, I guess sometimes you have to break some eggs to make an omelet!
Justice Bernette Johnson was elected to serve on the Louisiana Supreme Court in 1994, and was re-elected, without opposition, in 2000. She serves on the Louisiana Supreme Court’s Judicial Council, and has served on the Court’s Legal Services Task Force, as well as the National Campaign on Best Practices in the area of Racial and Ethnic Fairness in the Courts. Justice Johnson has worked closely with the Court’s Mandatory Continuing Legal Education Committee and the Committee on Bar Admissions.
Johnson served in a number of positions of increasing responsibility within New Orleans city government and the private industry before her time on the Supreme Court. She received her undergraduate degree from Spelman College. She received an Honorary Doctorate in Law from Spelman College at commencement services in April, 2001. She was one of the first African American women to attend the Law School at Louisiana State University (LSU), where she received her Juris Doctorate degree in 1969. She was honored by her law school in 1996, when she was inducted into the LSU Law Center’s Hall of Fame.
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