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Supreme Court expert available to discuss the confirmation of Ketanji Brown Jackson

April 7, 2022 –University of Houston Law Professor Renee Knake Jefferson said the confirmation of Ketanji Brown Jackson to the Supreme Court is a historic moment for the nation to celebrate.

“The appointment of a Black woman to the Supreme Court is long-overdue and there could not be a more qualified, deserving person to be our next justice than Ketanji Brown Jackson,” Jefferson said. “This is a moment of greatness in our nation’s history and it is incredible to witness it.”

Jefferson, whose scholarship focuses on the history of United States Supreme Court nominations—especially women shortlisted for the Court—is available for press inquiries and to provide media commentary about Jackson’s confirmation. She is also able to comment on Jackson’s qualifications/judicial record and to offer predictions about what her presence on the Court means for future decisions.

“Jackson is an exceptional choice who offers more diversity than her race and gender,” Jefferson said. “She brings the perspective of having served as a public defender, representing individuals facing criminal charges who cannot afford a lawyer.”

In her book “SHORTLISTED: Women in the Shadows of the Supreme Court” (New York University Press, 2020, paperback 2022), Jefferson and co-author Hannah Brenner Johnson examine the personal and professional lives of nine women who were considered, and ultimately passed over, for seats on the Supreme Court before Sandra Day O’Connor became the first.  The paperback edition of the book, with a new foreword by MSNBC Commentator and New York University Law Professor Melissa Murray, was released February 15, 2022.

Jefferson’s media appearances about Supreme Court nominees include a March 2022 interview on the C-SPAN program Q&A and repeat appearances on MSNBC (see here and here).

Jefferson holds the Joanne and Larry Doherty Chair in Legal Ethics at the University of Houston. She earned her J.D. at the University of Chicago Law School, and teaches Constitutional Law, Professional Responsibility, and a seminar on Gender, Power, Law & Leadership. She is a Fulbright recipient and an elected member of the American Law Institute.

If you are interested in including Professor Jefferson in your media coverage, please contact Carrie Anna Criado, UH Law Center Assistant Dean of Communications and Marketing, cacriado@central.uh.edu.

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