The “Notorious RBG”

Ava Spragins, Staff Reporter

Joan Ruth Bader (Ginsburg) was born on March 15, 1933 in Brooklyn, NY. She attended Cornell University on a full scholarship, where she met her future husband, Martin Ginsburg. Ruth Bader Ginsburg completed her legal education at Columbia Law School and graduated in a tie for first place in 1959. In 1971, Ruth published two articles on women’s liberation and taught a course on gender discrimination, collaborating with the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU)  to draft briefs in two federal cases (Smentkowski, Houck). After becoming founding counsel of the ACLU’s Women’s Rights Project, she went on to become the first tenured female faculty member (Smentkowski, Houck) Columbia Law School ever hired. She wrote many law review articles and drafted or contributed (Smentkowski, Houck)  to multiple Supreme Court briefs on the issue of gender discrimination. During the decade, (Smentkowski, Houck)  she argued before the Supreme Court, and won five out of her six cases. In 1980, President Jimmy Carter appointed Ginsburg to the US Court of Appeals for Washington D.C. On June 14, 1993, President Bill Clinton nominated Ginsburg to the US Supreme Court to replace the retiring Justice, Byron White. She was unanimously endorsed by the Senate Judiciary Committee and confirmed by the full Senate on August 3, (Smentkowski, Houck) making her the second female Justice, following Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, on the Supreme Court. Although Ginsburg was liberal, she formed friendships with most every Justice on the Supreme Court. The “Notorious RBG” had multiple massive impacts on Americans through her fight for equality and changed the lives of many throughout her life. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died on September 18, 2020 in Washington D.C. at the age of 90. 


Smentkowski, B., & Houck, A. (2020, September 22). Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Retrieved November 15, 2020, from