Shirley Hufstedler, American lawyer and judge, Died at 90


Shirley Ann Mount Hufstedler was born on August 24, 1925, in Denver, Colorado and died on March 30, 2016.

She was an American lawyer and judge.

She served as the first United States Secretary of Education, under President Jimmy Carter.

During her teen years, she was befriended by famed war correspondent Ernie Pyle after her father built the Pyle house in Albuquerque.

Shirley received her tertiary education from the University of New Mexico (B.B.A. 1945) and Stanford Law School (LL.B. 1949).

Her career was distinguished at the highest levels of legal and public service. She began in private practice in Los Angeles in 1950.

Shirley Hufstedler served as Special Legal Consultant to the Attorney General of California in the complex Colorado River litigation before the U.S. Supreme Court, from 1960 to 1961.

During 1961, Shirley was appointed Judge of the Los Angeles County Superior Court, a position to which she was elected in 1962.

Hufstedler was appointed Associate Justice of the California Court of Appeal, in 1966.

She was appointed Judge by President Lyndon Johnson appointed of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in 1968.

Shirley Hufstedler was not the first woman to serve on a federal Court of Appeals, but for at least part of her tenure was the only woman serving among approximately 100 judges nationwide.

Shirley Hufstedler served on the Court of Appeals for eleven years before President Jimmy Carter appointed her to be the first U.S. Secretary of Education in 1979.

And the Supersisters trading card set was produced and distributed in 1979, one of the cards featured Hufstedler’s name and picture.

During 1981, Hufstedler returned to private life, teaching and practicing law.

Shirley Hufstedler was a partner in the firm Hufstedler & Kaus, now merged into Morrison & Foerster.

Shirley Hufstedler was the recipient of 20 honorary doctoral degrees from American universities.

Also, she served on boards of trustees, governing boards and visiting committees for numerous foundations, institutions, corporations and universities.

She was considered to be a candidate for the Supreme Court if a vacancy had occurred under a Jimmy Carter presidency.

Shirley Hufstedler passed away at 90 yrs old.