Sandra Day O'Connor

U.S. Supreme Court Justice
Born Mar 26, 1930

Sandra Day O'Connor is an American jurist who was the first female member of the Supreme Court of the United States. She served as an Associate Justice from 1981 until her retirement from the Court in 2006. O'Connor was appointed by President Ronald Reagan in 1981. In the latter years of her tenure, she was regarded as having the swing vote in many cases. Prior to O'Connor's appointment to the Court, she was an elected official and judge in Arizona.… Read More

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1930 Birth Born on March 26, 1930.


1946 16 Years Old She graduated sixth in her class at Austin High School in El Paso in 1946.


1950 20 Years Old She attended Stanford University, where she received her B.A. in economics in 1950. … Read More
1952 22 Years Old 1 More Event
She has stated that she graduated third in her law school class, although Stanford's official position is that the law school did not rank students in 1952.


1965 35 Years Old O'Connor served as Assistant Attorney General of Arizona from 1965 to 1969 until she was appointed to fill a vacancy in the Arizona State Senate.


1973 43 Years Old She was elected to the State Senate in 1973 and became the first woman to serve as its Majority Leader.
1974 44 Years Old In 1974 she was elected to the Maricopa County Superior Court serving from 1975 to 1979 when she was elevated to the Arizona State Court of Appeals.


She served on the Court of Appeals-Division One until 1981 when she was appointed to the Supreme Court. On July 7, 1981, Reagan – who had pledged during his 1980 presidential campaign to appoint the first woman to the Court – announced he would nominate O'Connor as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court, to replace the retiring Potter Stewart. … Read More
1983 53 Years Old According to George Washington University law professor Jeffrey Rosen, "O'Connor was an eloquent opponent of intrusive group searches that threatened privacy without increasing security. In a 1983 opinion upholding searches by drug-sniffing dogs, she recognized that a search is most likely to be considered constitutionally reasonable if it is very effective at discovering contraband without revealing innocent but embarrassing information." … Read More
1987 57 Years Old In 1987's McCleskey v. Kemp, O'Connor joined a 5–4 majority that voted to uphold the death penalty for an African American man, Warren McCleskey, convicted of killing a white police officer, despite statistical evidence that black defendants were more likely to receive the death penalty than others both in Georgia and in the U.S. as a whole.


1990 - 2003 7 More Events
However, on July 1, 2005, it was O'Connor who announced her retirement plans. … Read More
On March 9, 2006, during a speech at Georgetown University, O'Connor said some political attacks on the independence of the courts pose a direct threat to the constitutional freedoms of Americans. … Read More
2007 77 Years Old 1 More Event
O'Connor chaired the Jamestown 2007 celebration, commemorating the 400th anniversary of the founding of the colony at Jamestown, Virginia in 1607. … Read More
In 2008, O'Connor was named an inaugural Harry Rathbun Visiting Fellow by the Office for Religious Life at Stanford University.
In 2009, O'Connor founded the 501(c)3 non-profit organization, O'Connor House, dedicated to solving complex issues through civil discourse and collaborative action.
2010 80 Years Old During the inauguration of Mesa Municipal Court on April 16, 2010, she gracefully received a blessed garland – along with a copy of Bhagavad-Gītā As It Is from Dr. Prayag Narayan Misra – a Hare Krishna devotee. … Read More
2013 83 Years Old 1 More Event
She wrote the 2013 book Out of Order: Stories from the History of the Supreme Court.
Original Authors of this text are noted on'Connor.
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