January 8


Jane Matilda Bolin 

Jane Bolin 1942
Judge Jane Bolin (1942)
Jane Matilda Bolin, the first African American Female Judge in the United States died on January 8, 2007 in Long Island City, Queens, New York at age 98.  She was sworn in at age 31 on July 22, 1939 by New York City Mayor Fiorello H. La Guardia.   This was not the first major achievement for Bolin, she was the first African American female to graduate from Yale Law School in 1931.  She was the only African American and one of only three women in her Yale Law School class.  Bolin worked as a judge in what is referred to as Family Court for four decades until January of 1979 after reaching the mandatory retirement age of 70. Judge Bolin was born on April 11, 1908 in Poughkeepsie, New York.

Words That Matter

Judge Jane Matilda Bolin

There was little opportunity for women in law, and absolutely none for a 'coloured one'

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