Life Lessons from Justice Ginsburg

Dear Friends,

Three years ago, I was in the audience at Auditorium Theatre to see Ruth Bader Ginsburg address a standing-room only crowd of mostly women. I took only one picture that night (sadly, it was not a selfie with RBG herself.) It’s a shot of the enormous screen with a photo of Justice Ginsburg in the center, surrounded by a list of her “life lessons”. Two stand out today: “Repair tears in our community” and “Align with others for change.”

Our communities have been ravaged in ways that few of us could have imagined that night, even when (as in the case of racism) the roots of the conflict are centuries old. In the wake of Justice Ginsburg’s death, as we face the potential for even more harm to communities, it is imperative that we honor her legacy by adhering to these deceptively simple lessons. Aligning with others can be hard work — it means actively seeking the places our principles intersect, and it requires humility and an occasional compromise – but it’s an essential part of creating change.

To our friends, colleagues, supporters; for everyone who sent crying emojis on Friday evening, and for everyone who was actually weeping, we look forward to making change together.


Margaret R. Duval
Executive Director, Ascend Justice