Hispanic-Latinx Heritage Month – Featuring Justice Sonia Sotomayor
September 17, 2021
When President Obama nominated federal judge Sonia Sotomayor to the Supreme Court in 2009, many Americans welcomed the appointment as a historic milestone; she is the first Hispanic American to serve on the high court. Her colleagues on the federal bench praised her as “a role model of aspiration, discipline… and integrity.”
Born to Puerto Rican parents in New York City, Sonia Sotomayor grew up in a housing project in the Bronx. At age eight, she was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes, requiring daily insulin injections. Her father died the following year, leaving her mother to raise her and her brother alone. Young Sonia found solace in reading, and at age ten, decided that she would be an attorney. Sotomayor graduated summa cum laude from Princeton University and earned her law degree at Yale Law School.
As an assistant district attorney in New York City, she earned a reputation as a fearless prosecutor of violent crimes. She was still in her thirties when President George H.W. Bush appointed her to the federal bench for the Southern District of New York. Of the 450 cases she heard, one of her most famous rulings ended the major league baseball strike, just in time for opening day. Appointed to the U.S. Court of Appeals by President Clinton, she heard more than 3,00 cases and wrote roughly 380 opinions. Today, she is the only sitting Justice with experience as a trial judge and brought more federal judicial experience to the Supreme Court than any appointee in one hundred years.
For more information about Justice Sotomayor visit the Academy of Achievement Sonia Sotomayor | Academy of Achievement or read one of the books she has published https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/authors/130766/sonia-sotomayor/