By Noél Heard, 3L
Thomas Jefferson School of Law has made a commitment to diversity not only in its student body, but also in its faculty and staff. This was evident on February 22, 2013, when TJSL’s Black Law Student Association took the time to honor and commemorate its Black faculty and staff and those who have been instrumental in the furtherance of diversity at the school.
Food, poetry and thankfulness filled the air. The celebration started with remarks from BLSA’s President Antionette Scott 3L, followed by “finger-snap worthy” poetry by an invited guest, Vogue Robinson. BLSA also took time to remember Judge Earl B. Gilliam, a former law professor at TJSL in the ‘70s, ‘80s and early ‘90s and more notably first Black Superior Court Judge in San Diego County.
Professor Kevin J. Greene, the first black tenured professor at TJSL, was in attendance as well as Admissions Director Tim Spearman, Professor Richard Winchester, Associate Career Services Director Randy Reliford, and Admissions Coordinator Pam Davis. Dean Beth Kransberger, who has been committed to furthering the diversity efforts, was also in attendance.
“We have worked hard at making this a place with a human touch – because we care,” said Professor Winchester while addressing the group.
“BLSA is a place to make friends for life,” said Tim Spearman, noting that he and Randy Reliford were law school classmates and BLSA members together.
Remarks were given by Justin Hall 2L, Noél Heard 3L and Jillian Kates 2L. As the laughs resounded and tears flowed, their speeches displayed a collective appreciation to all the faculty and staff who were in any way connected to the BLSA community.
In an emotional speech, Heard thanked those at the meeting from the heart, saying “You are more instrumental in my success than you know.”