Justice Sandra Day O’Connor

Chair Emeritus & iCivics Founder, U.S. Supreme Court (Retired)

Justice Sandra Day O’Connor (ret.) was born in El Paso, Texas, March 26, 1930. She married John Jay O’Connor III in 1952 and has three sons - Scott, Brian, and Jay. She received her B.A. and LL.B. from Stanford University. She served as Deputy County Attorney of San Mateo County, California from 1952–1953 and as a civilian attorney for Quartermaster Market Center, Frankfurt, Germany, from 1954–1957. From 1958–1960, she practiced law in Maryvale, Arizona, and served as Assistant Attorney General of Arizona from 1965–1969. She was appointed to the Arizona State Senate in 1969 and was subsequently reelected to two two-year terms. In 1975, she was elected Judge of the Maricopa County Superior Court and served until 1979, when she was appointed to the Arizona Court of Appeals. President Reagan nominated her as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court, and she took her seat September 25, 1981. Justice O’Connor retired from the Supreme Court on January 31, 2006. In 2009, President Obama awarded Justice O’Connor America’s highest civilian honor, the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Since stepping down from the bench, Justice O’Connor has dedicated her time and energy to civics education in the U.S. She serves as Chairperson of the iCivics Board of Directors.