U.S. District Court Judge Bernice Donald, 60, was given a special ceremony on Thursday where she was sworn in to the U.S. Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals on Thursday.
Noted as one of few to have worked on almost all of the judicial levels, the University of Memphis Cecil C. Humphreys School of Law alumni, born and raised in Desoto County, Mississippi was nominated by President Barack Obama in September. Donald received confirmation from the Senate of her appointment in September.
Donald’s new promotion has led her to be the first black woman to serve on the Cincinnati court which follows behind her being the first to serve in the Memphis federal district.
In the 1960’s, Judge Bernice Donald was one of the first students to help integrate the school system in Olive Branch, MS at Olive Branch High.
Judge Donald has worked as a judge in the Tennessee’s General Sessions Criminal Court (Shelby County General Sessions Court), U.S. Bankruptcy Court and in the United States District Court for the Western District of Tennessee (Secretary of the American Bar Association), which is where she was prior to being nominated by President Barack Obama.
Donald will be replacing Judge Ronald Lee Gilman whose senior status was taken in November 2010.
The swearing-in ceremony took place at the Cannon Center for the Performing Arts.