Congresswoman Donna Edwards, JD '89
UNH School of Law Board of Trustees Board Emeriti
June 18, 2008
Pierce Law Alumna Is Maryland’s First African American Woman Elected to Congress
Donna Edwards, Pierce Law Class of 1989, has been elected to Congress from the 4th district of Maryland, becoming the first African American woman ever elected from the state. Edwards ran on a populist, anti-war platform. Her elected position is the newest development in her commitment to service originally ignited by public interest studies at Pierce Law.
Since graduating from Pierce Law, the former executive director of the ARCA Foundation, a non-profit with the stated mission of encouraging organizations that “speak out and ask questions” in the pursuit of equity and justice, has headed a number of non-profit agencies. They include the National Network to End Domestic Violence that worked successfully to pass the Violence Against Women Act of 1994 and the Center for a New Democracy.
Edwards’ election to Congress is not her first ground-breaking as an woman and an African American. When she graduated from high school, she was one of the few women invited to join the first co-ed class at the United States Air Force Academy and she graduated from Wake Forest University in North Carolina as one of only six African American women.
Professor of Law and Director of Pierce Law’s Externship Studies Ellen Musinsky remarks, “Donna Edwards will continue to make a name for herself. She really is a special person, and very committed to doing good for the country.”