The next group of Supreme Court contenders on the short list has a flurry of firsts to their names: the first person in her family to go to college, the first woman to chair the National Governor’s Association, and the first woman to receive a named chair at the University of Chicago Law School.
Jennifer Granholm, Governor of Michigan
Alumna: Harvard Law School, 1987
- Granholm, who was born in Vancouver, Canada, has a Twitter account.
- According to a Newsweek profile titled “Brainy, Blond and Ready to Rumble” written in 2002, Granholm initially pursued a career in Hollywood, and once appeared on "The Dating Game." (Newsweek)
- Received her BA from UC-Berkeley.
- Served as editor-in-chief of Harvard's Civil Rights Civil Liberties Law Review.
- Graduated from Harvard Law with honors.
- Granholm, whose parents were avid Republicans, worked for Gerald Ford’s re-election campaign when she was in high school.
- She was the first person in her family to go to college. (Jezebel.com)
Diane Pamela Wood, judge 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals
Alumna: University of Texas School of Law, 1975
- After Wood joined the faculty of the University of Chicago Law School, she became the first woman there to receive a named chair. (Slate.com)
- Graduated from UofT with the Order of the Coif.
- Joined University of Chicago's "distinctly inhospitable" (according to Yale Prof. Lea Brilmayer) faculty as the only female member. She was eight months pregnant at the time. (NYTimes)
Janet Napolitano, Homeland Security Secretary
Alumna: University of Virginia School of Law, 1983
- Napolitano, formerly the governor of Arizona, was the first woman to chair the National Governor’s Association.
- She credits her stay-at-home mother and her former boss Judge Mary Schroeder of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals as having a great deal of influence in her decision to take on leadership positions. (Newsweek)
- She was named one of America’s five best governors by Time magazine in 2005. (Time)
- She is an ardent Monty Python fan.
Read about other nominees Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor here.