10 Badass Women in the Legal World

Since tomorrow is International Women's Day and March is Women's History Month, there's no better time to take a look back into history to make note of women who have paved the way for today's female lawyers.

Get inspired by the amazing feats of all these women--and make sure to think about what impact you'll make in the future.

1. Margaret Brent

Brent is one of two women considered to be the first female lawyer in the United States (read about the other one down below!). In 1638 she was named executor for Lord Calvert, the governor of Maryland colony. Her practice included over 100 cases in both Maryland and Virginia.

2. Arabella Mansfield

Mansfield is also considered to be the first female lawyer in the United States. She was admitted to the Iowa bar in 1869, becoming the first women in the United States to become a practicing lawyer. She spent most of her career as a professor of law at several universities.

3. Myra Bradwell

Bradwell appealed to the Supreme Court of the United States in 1873 in what many believe to be the first sexual discrimination case in America. In Bradwell v. Illinois, she argued that she was qualified to practice law as a U.S. citizen according to the Fourteenth Amendment. Unfortunately, the Court did not rule in her favor.

4. Lemma Barkeloo

Barkeloo was one of the first women to apply to and attend law school. After being rejected from Columbia Law School, she was admitted to Washington University Law School in St. Louis. However, she quit Washington University after only one year due to the constant harassment from her male classmates. She later passed the Missouri bar without completing law school.

5. Phoebe Wilson Couzins

Couzins is the other female law student who paved her own path in the male-dominated world of law school. She also attended Washington University Law School. Later on, she became the first female U.S. marshal.

6. Genevieve Rose Cline

Cline became the first female federal judge in the United States. President Calvin Coolidge nominated her to the U.S. Customs Court in 1928, where she served for 25 years.

7. Sarah Weddington

While arguing in Roe v. Wade, Weddington become the youngest person ever to argue in front of the Supreme Court and win--at 26 years old.

8. Sandra Day O'Connor

O'Connor made history as the first female Supreme Court Justice in the United States, a position she held until she retired in 2006.

9. Janet Reno

During the Clinton administration in the United States, Reno became the first female U.S. Attorney General, which she held for both of President Clinton's terms as president of the United States.

10. Sonia Sotomayor

Sotomayor was appointed to the Supreme Court of the United States by President Barack Obama in 2009, making her the first Hispanic and Latina Justice.


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