Justice Ginsburg was our guest at Stanford Law School in September, helping us celebrate the U.S. Constitution. It was fitting. Her life’s work has been to redeem, and to make good on, the full promise of the Constitution’s protections. As she has put it, our country has progressively worked to expand who counts as the “We” in “We the People,” and Justice Ginsburg has been a key architect of that expansion.
Toward the end of the PBS FRONTLINE documentary about the 2007 economic crisis “The Warning,” former SEC chairman Arthur Levitt issued something of an apology to Brooksley Born, saying “I’ve come to know her as one of the most capable, dedicated, intelligent, and committed public servants. … I wish I knew her better in Washington. I could have done much better. I could have made a difference.”
Secretary Clinton took office at a tumultuous time, when the world economy was on the brink of collapse and public opposition to wars in Iraq and Afghanistan was growing. Today she manages the foreign policy of the United States and U.S. diplomatic efforts in an era when the world’s nations are more connected to each other, with communication—and popular uprisings—a mere “tweet” away.
These are busy days for Representative Xavier Becerra, JD ’84 (BA ’80). Media appearances, phone conferences with constituents, interviews with his alumni magazine. Sure, the life of a public official is always hectic, and Becerra is dedicated to the job of serving the people of the 31st District of Los Angeles, something he has done since he was first elected to the House of Representatives in 1992.
The son of a German mother and an African-American father, he was raised in a working-class suburb of New Jersey—often spending weekends and evenings helping his father with the family’s office cleaning company. A bright student, he was encouraged by his parents to pursue higher education and he excelled at Stanford Law School. He was elected Law Association president following his 1L year, became a notes editor for Stanford Law Review …
Scott A. Blackmun ’82
Two Thousand and nine is a year that members of the United States Olympic Committee (USOC) would probably prefer to forget. Reeling from the stinging loss of its bid to host the 2016 Olympic Games in Chicago—ousted in the first round of voting, despite a very public trip by President and Mrs. Obama to Copenhagen to support the bid—the USOC couldn’t avoid the beating it received in the press…
When David J. Hayes ’78 graduated from law school, he planned to be a trial lawyer, heading off to clerk first for Judge William Jones and then for Judge Louis F. Oberdorfer, both on the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. But that fall something happened that changed the direction of his career.