September 2023 President's Letter

Written by National Association of Women Judges|September 06, 2023|Monthly Update Archive

toni-clarke-updated.pngHappy Labor Day! On the first Monday in September, we honor and recognize the American labor movement and the works and contributions of laborers to the development and achievements of the United States. Labor Day also marks the unofficial start of the Fall season. As we move into September there are a couple of webinars and events sponsored or co-sponsored by NAWJ. On September 6th we will present a webinar on Immigration, Children and Youth. The library of the webinars and programs we produced during the year is now available on our website.

On September 26th and 27th I will participate in the 10th Annual Relativity Fest in Chicago. This program, The Law, the Taliban, and the Women Judges of Afghanistan, developed by Relativity and NAWJ, will explore and discuss the challenges of women in the law, and of the women judges of Afghanistan and their harrowing escapes from their country after the Taliban regained control. I am honored to be on two panels with esteemed judges, including Judge Lida Kharooti from Afghanistan.

We also recognize a somber anniversary. August 15th marked the two-year anniversary of our Afghan sister judges being forced to leave their country, losing their jobs, careers, homeland, and the life they knew. September 1st also marked the two-year anniversary of the last day of the United States’ withdrawal from Afghanistan. As you know, with the efforts and unwavering assistance from many of our NAWJ and IAWJ members, a significant number of the women judges from Afghanistan were able to escape, many of whom have landed here in the United States. We continue to support our Afghan sister judges with mentors and resources around the country.

National Hispanic Heritage Month is September 15 to October 15th. During that time, we celebrate and recognize the contributions and influence of Hispanic Americans to the history, culture, and achievement of United States. Please take time to recognize, celebrate and appreciate the diverse cultures and extensive histories of those American citizens whose ancestry can be traced to over 20 countries in Latin America.

We are about four weeks away from the NAWJ Annual Conference in Indianapolis. Over 50 international judges are registered to attend, we have commitments from four area law schools who have committed to sending students for our Planting the Seed Program, and the Annual Conference Planning Committee has great programming and social events planned. So, I hope you will join me at the Annual Conference. I look forward to seeing many of you in Indianapolis!

Respectfully submitted,
Judge Toni E. Clarke (Ret)
President, NAWJ 

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