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“Everything Seems More Possible”

It’s been two years since Justice Sonia Sotomayor was sworn in to join the Supreme Court, becoming the third woman to serve and the first Hispanic justice on the bench. Jennifer Salazar, a law school graduate, writes about what this appointment means to her and the Hispanic community.

Jennifer Salazar, New Mexico Volunteer

I remember the excitement I felt seeing the first Latina judge appointed to the Supreme Court. It was my second year in law school, and this historic step fueled my energy to continue forward in my education and career. It was all really special, not just for myself, but for all Latinas and Latinos that look up to her.

President Obama made a promise to bring diversity to the Supreme Court. He not only kept that promise, he appointed a true role model—Justice Sonia Sotomayor. More than a judge, she is a woman who has overcome adversity through hard work and dedication.

Brought up in the Bronx by her mother after her father died when she was nine, Justice Sotomayor graduated as valedictorian from her high school and went on to Princeton and Yale Law School. She served as an assistant district attorney in New York before being nominated as a district court judge in 1991. Her success makes everything seem more possible.

I’ve always believed in the saying “we stand on the shoulders of giants,” and to me Justice Sotomayor is a trailblazer who has paved the way for a woman like me to succeed.

I interned at the Department of the Interior this past year and was proud to see other minorities in the administration. I believe President Obama values diversity and diverse perspectives.

If any young girl has ever dreamed of becoming a Supreme Court justice, it only seems more possible now. Having a woman in such a powerful position inspires others to follow in her footsteps. As Justice Sotomayor has inspired me, I hope other young women can become energized and inspired to follow their dreams.

Who is your role model? Let us know in the comments below.

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