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Sandra Day O'Connor

Serving on the highest court in the country

On September 25, 1981, Sandra Day O’Connor was sworn in as an associate justice of the Supreme Court of the United States. In 1985, O'Connor quietly donated the robe she wore to the ceremony—the robe that symbolized a milestone in her judicial career and in women’s history—to the National Museum of American History. In her 25 years on the Supreme Court, she earned a reputation as a pragmatic centrist voice by judging each case on its individual merits and specializing in narrowly crafted opinions.

Sandra Day O'Connor

Object Details

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National Portrait Gallery Collection
Date
2006
Object number
NPG.2008.87
Exhibition Label
Born Duncan, Arizona
In 1981, President Ronald Reagan fulfilled a campaign promise to appoint the first woman to the U.S. Supreme Court by nominating Arizona lawyer and judge Sandra Day O'Connor to a seat on the bench. After announcing the nomination, Reagan wrote in his diary, "Already the flak is starting and from my own supporters. . . . I think that she'll make a good justice." O'Connor served from 1981 to her retirement in 2006 and left a reputation as a conscientious associate justice, one inclined toward narrowly based judgments rendered on a case-by-case basis, thereby avoiding setting sweeping precedents. A lifelong Republican, O'Connor came to the court after a career in the law and politics in both Arizona and California
This portrait, along with twenty-four others by an equal number of artists, was created on October 10, 2006, when O'Connor agreed to be the model for a longstanding informal painting group that meets weekly in New York City.
Provenance
The artist; gift 2008 to NPG
Credit Line
National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution; gift of Jean Marcellino
Artist
Jean Marcellino, born 1938
Sitter
Sandra Day O'Connor, born 26 Mar 1930
Topic
Home Furnishings\Furniture\Seating\Chair
Costume\Robe
Sandra Day O'Connor: Female
Sandra Day O'Connor: Law and Law Enforcement\Lawyer
Sandra Day O'Connor: Law and Law Enforcement\Judge\Justice\US Supreme Court Justice
Sandra Day O'Connor: Education\Administrator\University\Chancellor
Sandra Day O'Connor: Politics and Government\State Senator\Arizona
Sandra Day O'Connor: Presidential Medal of Freedom
Portrait
Medium
Oil on linen
Dimensions
Stretcher: 50.8 x 40.6cm (20 x 16")
Frame: 61.9 x 51.8 x 5.1cm (24 3/8 x 20 3/8 x 2")
Data Source
National Portrait Gallery
Restrictions & Rights
Usage conditions apply
Copyright
© 2008, Jean Marcellino
Type
Painting
GUID
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/sm443d6a5d6-bc88-4848-8e80-7ceb01d54a64
Record ID
npg_NPG.2008.87

Sandra Day O'Connor

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