In the wake of the announcement that Supreme Court Associate Justice Stephen Breyer will be retiring in the latter half of 2022, the process of nominating and confirming his replacement is well underway.
The Honorable Ketanji Brown Jackson, nominated by President Biden earlier this year, is appearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee as part of the confirmation process. Judge Jackson, 51, had previously served on the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, and before that, had spent nearly a decade as the District Judge for the United States District Court for the District of Columbia.
Judge Jackson attended Harvard University for both her undergraduate studies and law degree, and has written over five hundred opinions in her time on the bench. Her nomination marked the first time that an African American woman had been considered for a spot on the Supreme Court. If confirmed, she would become the 116th Associate Justice of the Supreme Court.
The confirmation process involves appearing in front of Senators and answering questions based on her judicial history, philosophy, and any other relevant points as decided by the committee. A total of twenty two Senators will ask questions in the publicly televised confirmation process. The confirmation vote will then be held by the Senate chamber at-large.
Judge Jackson has been quick to credit her family for the role they have played in her success. “My parents taught me that, unlike the many barriers that they had had to face growing up, my path was clearer, such that if I worked hard and believed in myself, in America I could do anything or be anything I wanted to be.”
She currently lives in Washington DC with her husband, Patrick, and two daughters.