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African American History Month: Six Judges' Journeys Recall Civil Rights Era

February is African American History Month, and video profiles of six African American federal judges offer a dramatic view of the changes experienced by individuals and a nation during the Civil Rights era.

The videos, part of the U.S. courts’ “Pathways to the Bench” series, recount the judges’ personal exposure to segregation, violence and racial discrimination while growing up—and how events in the 1950s, ‘60s and ‘70s motivated them to enter the law and eventually become judges.

The profiled judges are:

The courts' “Pathways to the Bench” series shows brief video profiles of how federal judges overcame personal and character-building challenges. The videos and other educational materials can be found in the Educational Resources section of The site also has information on annual observances honored by the federal courts, including African American History Month.

recent news article also describes how a federal court in Alabama played a major role in Martin Luther King Jr.’s civil rights work.

Related Topics: Events and Ceremonies, Public Education