Civil Rights Leader Wade Henderson to Testify in Support of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson’s Confirmation

Courts Resources 03.24.22

Contact: Rafael Medina, [email protected], 202.869.0390

WASHINGTON — Wade Henderson, interim president and CEO of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, will testify today before the Senate Judiciary Committee in support of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson’s nomination to serve as an associate justice of the U.S. Supreme Court.

Henderson’s testimony underscores the promise of the Supreme Court, the historic nature of Judge Jackson’s nomination, and her eminent qualifications. If confirmed, she will be the first Black woman to serve on the Court. She will be the first justice with any significant criminal defense experience since Justice Thurgood Marshall, and she will be the only Supreme Court justice to have ever served as a public defender. Judge Jackson’s judicial temperament was on full display during the grueling three-day confirmation hearings. Her distinguished legal career, her collegiality and professionalism to all in and out of her courtroom, and her demonstrated commitment to equal justice make her the perfect choice to serve on our nation’s highest court.

Henderson’s testimony reads, in part: “The nomination of Judge Jackson comes at a pivotal moment in our nation’s history. Her confirmation will not only be historic, but will also be crucial as we write the next chapter of our democracy. Nearly 13 years ago, I had the privilege of testifying before this committee in support of now-Justice Sonia Sotomayor’s historic confirmation as the first Latina — and first woman of color — to serve on our nation’s highest court. Today, I share the same testimony: ‘While great challenges remain on our nation’s quest for equal opportunity, we have truly reached an historic marker on the journey toward our goal of ‘Equal Justice Under Law’ – the phrase inscribed, not far from here, on the front of the Supreme Court building.’ By confirming Judge Jackson, the Senate will move our judiciary closer to the promise of equal justice for all. Indeed, the hope and joy of this monumental moment will be felt for generations to come.

Henderson’s testimony continues: “Her broad and impressive legal career has demonstrated her commitment to civil and human rights, and during her time as a judge, she has earned a superb reputation for being an outstanding, fair-minded arbiter of justice. Her nomination to the Court has been celebrated by all who believe that our judiciary should be staffed with well-qualified and impartial jurists.”

Henderson’s full written testimony is available here.

The Leadership Conference, joined by 186 national organizations, released a letter last week urging the Senate to confirm Judge Jackson as an associate justice of the U.S. Supreme Court.

The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights is a coalition charged by its diverse membership of more than 230 national organizations to promote and protect the rights of all persons in the United States. The Leadership Conference works toward an America as good as its ideals. For more information on The Leadership Conference and its member organizations, visit