Who Is Ketanji Brown Jackson?
Brown, Ketanji Jackson, born Ketanji Onyika Brown in 1970, is a federal judge and former federal public defender who has been nominated by President Joe Biden to serve as an associate justice on the United States Supreme Court.
She is the first Black woman to be nominated to the Supreme Court. Jackson grew up in Miami and stated in her high school yearbook that she hoped to one day be appointed to the bench.
She attended Harvard for both her undergraduate and law degrees, and she is married to another Harvard alum.
On February 25, 2022, President Biden announced his nomination of Jackson to replace the Supreme Court seat left vacant by Justice Stephen Breyer’s retirement.
If confirmed, Jackson will be the first African-American woman to serve on the Supreme Court. She would also be the first federal public defender to sit on the bench, and the first justice to have defended criminal defendants since Thurgood Marshall.
Despite working for many private law firms, Jackson spent most of her legal career as a public servant. She clerked for two federal justices after graduating from Harvard Law School in 1996.
During the 1999-2000 term, she clerked for Justice Breyer on the Supreme Court.
Jackson joined the nonpartisan United States Sentencing Board in 2003, the first of two terms on the commission. She served as an associate federal public defender in Washington, D.C., from 2005 to 2007.
Her portfolio included representing impoverished people as well as some Guantánamo Bay captives.
Jackson returned to private practice until being appointed vice-chair of the United States Sentencing Commission in 2010.
At a period when federal prisons were overcrowded, she was viewed as a consensus builder in crafting federal sentencing policy.
The commission unanimously agreed to reduce federal drug penalties and retrospectively provided this relief.
Ketanji Brown Jackson’s net worth is estimated to be $23 million, she currently earns an annual salary of $300,000 US Dollars.