Ketanji Brown Jackson was born on September 30, 1970, in Washington, D.C., to parents who were both prominent figures in the legal community.
Her mother, Ellistine Brown, was an educator and school administrator, while her father, Johnny Brown, was a lawyer who served as a public defender and later became a partner at a law firm.
Ketanji’s parents instilled in her a deep sense of the importance of education and hard work. Her mother was particularly influential in shaping her career path, as she herself had been denied opportunities in higher education due to the racism and discrimination of the time.
Ellistine Brown made sure that her daughter received a top-notch education, and Ketanji went on to graduate from Harvard University in 1992 with a degree in Government, and then from Harvard Law School in 1996.
Ketanji’s father, Johnny Brown, also had a significant impact on her life and career. He was known for his commitment to serving the underserved and for fighting for justice for his clients, even when it meant going up against powerful opponents.
Ketanji has often cited her father as a role model and inspiration for her own work in the legal profession.
Sadly, Ketanji’s father passed away when she was just a teenager, and her mother later passed away in 2009.
However, their legacy continues to live on through their daughter, who has become a trailblazer in her own right.
Ketanji has made history as the first African American woman to serve on the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, and more recently as the first African American woman to be nominated to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit.