From the 2005 News Archive
Watch Dorothy Roberts's lecture on racial disparities in the child welfare system
Dorothy Roberts, Kirland & Ellis Professor of Law at Northwestern University School of Law, delivered the inaugural Juanita Jackson Mitchell Lecture as part of the University of Maryland School of Law Distinguished Visitors Program. Professor Roberts's Lecture, entitled "The Problem with Racial Disparities in the Child Welfare System," took place on October 27, 2005 at 3pm at the School of Law. A reception will follow the lecture.
Professor Roberts joined Northwestern's faculty in fall 1998 with a joint appointment as a faculty fellow at the Institute for Policy Research. She is a frequent speaker and prolific scholar on issues related to race, gender, and the law and has published more than 50 articles in law reviews and books. Her recent publications include: Shattered Bonds: The Color of Child Welfare, Basic Books; Killing the Black Body: Race, Reproduction, and the Meaning of Liberty, Pantheon Books; Mary Joe Frug's Women and the Law (with Greenberg and Minow), Foundation Press; "Punishing Drug Addicts Who Have Babies: Women of Color, Equality, and the Right of Privacy," Harvard Law Review; "The Genetic Tie," University of Chicago Law Review; "Welfare and the Problem of Black Citizenship," Yale Law Journal. She has been a visiting professor at Stanford Law School and the University of Pennsylvania Law School, and a fellow at the Harvard University Program in Ethics and the Professions. Professor Roberts received a BA magna cum laude from Yale University and a JD from Harvard University.
Dorothy Roberts's work honors the legacy of Juanita Jackson Mitchell. Juanita Jackson Mitchell was a lawyer, activist and visionary leader in the struggle for civil rights in Maryland and across the country.
Born in 1913, Juanita Jackson Mitchell was one of the first African Americans to attend the University of Maryland School of Law and the first African American woman to practice law in Maryland. She worked with the NAACP as counsel and as president of the Baltimore branch and the Maryland Conference. In her work with the NAACP, she filed cases that, in the wake of the Supreme Court's decision in Brown vs. Board of Education, desegregated public schools across Maryland. Her work included suits to desegregate beaches, swimming pools and restaurants, and to enjoin police officers from conducting mass searches of private homes without warrants. She served as the first national director of the NAACP's youth and college division and was a central player in voter registration and desegregation efforts undertaken by the NAACP nationally
Juanita Jackson Mitchell was married to Clarence M. Mitchell, Jr., a nationally known civil rights leader and longtime Washington lobbyist for the NAACP. Together they had four children. Mrs. Mitchell died in 1992.
Juanita Jackson Mitchell's work empowered African Americans and set an example of public service for us all. The School of Law is pleased to inaugurate the Juanita Jackson Mitchell Lecture to honor her legacy of service.