Friday, August 31, 2007
Constance Baker Motley..A Giant Among Giants
Clearly one of the towering figures on the Riverton cultural landscape, Constance Baker Motley was a "lawyers lawyer". As a child in the scouts at PS 197, I remember seeing her with my counterpart Joel at our cub meetings. I knew, even then, that she was someone special, although I didn't know how or why. A dozen years earlier, as a fresh faced lawyer working as a clerk for the NAACP legal defense fund under the leadership of future Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall, Motley crafted hundreds of documents which were to become the basis of the ground breaking "Brown v Bd. Of Education" litigation which would eventually change face of educational opportunity in this country. She would later become the first Black Female to serve as a Federal Judge, and was eventually elected to the Borough Presidency of Manhattan.