Ruth Bader Ginsberg dedicated her life to securing equal rights for women. Having experienced many inequalities firsthand, she was determined to change the law for the next generation of women.
Ginsberg graduated at the top of her class at Columbia Law School, but struggled to find a job at a time when few women were admitted to law firms. When hired by Rutgers in 1963, she was one of fewer than 25 female law professors in the country.
In the 1960s, Ginsburg began arguing cases against gender discrimination. She scored a major victory in 1971 when the Supreme Court expanded the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment to include women. She then founded the American Civil Liberties Union’s Women’s Rights Project in 1972, taking on over 300 gender discrimination cases. She won five of the six cases she argued before the Supreme Court.
In 1993, Ginsburg became the second woman appointed to the US Supreme Court, after spending 13 years in the US Court of Appeals. Ginsburg passionately wrote majority and dissenting opinions in favor of gender equality, abortion rights, rights against search and seizure, voting rights, and affirmative action. She served on the court for 27 years. Upon her death in 2020, Chief Justice John Roberts remarked we had lost “a tireless and resolute champion of justice.”