RBG's Former Law Student: Ginsburg Was 'Teacher, Mentor, and Life Coach'

Sep 21, 2020

Before she was a Supreme Court Justice, Ruth Bader Ginsburg was a law professor at Rutgers University from 1963 to 1972. WSHU spoke with one of her former students, Marilyn Ford, who is now a law professor at Quinnipiac University.

Ford grew up as an African-American in Arkansas and St. Louis, Missouri. She said she was primarily concerned with African-American rights when she started law school. But Ginsburg taught her to think about civil rights on a broader scale.

“Justice Ginsburg made it quite clear that oppression of any group was oppression of all. Whether you were African-American, whether you were a woman, whether you were LGBT, whatever. Unless everybody had their civil liberties, nobody had their civil liberties,” Ford said.

Ford said Ginsburg also taught her how to dissent without being an obstructionist. She said she hopes the next appointee to the Supreme Court has Ginsburg’s commitment to the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence.