pursuing a career of her own. While, she passed away the day before Ruth graduated highschool, Ruth continued those life lessons that her mother taught her and always strived to do her best and work the hardest in her class to make her mother proud.
Ruth carried her love of education from James Madison High School to Cornell University where she graduated top of her class and met her future husband Martin. In 1954, the same year as her college graduation, she married Martin, a first-year law student at cornell and became Ruth Bader Ginsberg. After graduating, Ginsberg put her ambitions on hold to start a family and had her first child Jane Ginsberg a year later. They lived in Fort Sill, Oklahoma where Martin completed military service. Upon the completion of his discharge, Martin enrolled in Harvard Law school with Ruth enrolling shortly after.
While attending Law School Ruth faced adversity both personally and professionally. During her first year in law school Martin fell ill with testicular cancer. But that did not slow her down, rather she rose up to the challenge of excelling in school while also carrying full time for her sick husband. In addition to being the caretaker for her ailing husband she was also a mother to her young daughter. The classroom became valued time away from the chaos of her home life. However, being one of only nine females out of 500 people in her class proved challenging at times. She faced gender-based discrimination from nearly all of her piers and proffessors who believed that she undeservingly was taking a man’s spot at the law school. Undeterred she continued on becoming the first female member of the Harvard Law Review.
After civil procedure she became a professor at Rutgers University Law School, a position she held for nearly 10 years before becoming a professor at Columbia. At Columbia she became the first female professor at Columbia to earn tenure. While there, she also directed the Women’s Rights Project of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) leading the fight against gender discrimination. During her work with the ACLU Ginsburg fought against discrimination as a whole, fighting for all individuals being unfairly discriminated against.
In 1980, Ginsburg was appointed by Jimmy Carter to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. 13 years later, in 1993, following an appointment from Bill Clinton she became the 107th Supreme Court Justice. There she used her platform as a position to lead change and use her new power to fight for equality and women’s rights. She wrote the majority opinion in the United States v. Virginia stating that qualified women could not be denied admission to the Virginia Military Institute. But that was not the only case where Ginsberg fought for equality. In the case Ledbetter v. Goodyear Tire and Rubber Co. where a female worker was being paid much less than her male counterparts despite holding the same qualifications sued Goodyear under the basis of Title VII. Being reminded of those years where she struggled to find a job and being paid less than the males next to her she wrote a colloquial yet powerful version of her dissent to read. Ginsberg did not give up on this matter and in 2009 she worked with President Obama to pass the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009 which aims to help close the gender pay gap.
Justice Ginsberg has become a role model for all women in America teaching them that in the face of adversity or when people tell you that you are not good enough, use their doubt as motivation and follow your passions and ambitions because if you set your mind to it anything is possible.