Undergraduate Academic Affairs

About Justice Sonia Sotomayor

Portrait of Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor

Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor will visit campus March 10, 2014.Elena Seibert

Justice Sotomayor is the first Hispanic and third woman appointed to the United States Supreme Court.

She grew up in the Bronx, New York, where her father fixed radiators and her mother was a night nurse. As a child, she was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes and learned how to give herself her daily insulin shot. Her father, an alcoholic, passed away when she was nine. Her only professional role models were those she saw on TV (including the TV lawyer Perry Mason).

Despite these early obstacles, through determination and grit, she excelled. Sotomayor was her high school valedictorian, graduated summa cum laude from Princeton in 1976 and from Yale Law School in 1979, where she was editor of the Yale Law Review.

She served as an assistant district attorney in the New York County District Attorney’s Office and then at the law firm of Pavia & Harcourt where she was a partner. She served as a judge of the U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York, and was appointed to the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit by the time she was 40. President Barack Obama nominated her to the U.S. Supreme Court in 2009.

Media appearances by Justice Sotomayor