Karen Hastie Williams, Barrier-Breaking Attorney, Dies at 76

“She gave voice to the idea of sponsorship, of actively mentoring ladies,” Susan Hoffman, a associate at Crowell & Moring, stated in an interview. “She didn’t sit back again and say, ‘Good luck!’”

Karen Roberta Hastie was born on Sept. 30, 1944, in Washington. Her father, William H. Hastie, was himself a racial pioneer: In 1937 he grew to become the first Black guy to provide as a Federal District Court judge, a position he left to develop into dean of the legislation school at Howard College.

In 1946, when Karen was 2, President Harry S. Truman appointed her father governor of the U.S. Virgin Islands, where by Karen’s mom, Beryl (Lockhart) Hastie, a homemaker, had been born.

Three several years later on, Mr. Hastie broke a further barrier when Truman nominated him to the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, dependent in Philadelphia. He was the country’s initially Black appellate courtroom judge.

Ms. Hastie graduated from Bates Faculty, in Lewiston, Maine, in 1966 and gained a master’s degree from the Fletcher School of Legislation and Diplomacy at Tufts University in Massachusetts a yr later. Even though at Tufts she met Mr. Williams they married in 1968.

Together with her spouse and her son Bo, Mrs. Williams is survived by her daughter, Amanda P. Williams a further son, Bailey her brother, William H. Hastie and 6 grandchildren.

After her time with Justice Marshall, Mrs. Williams served as main counsel for the recently create Senate Funds Committee and then as an administrator in the Workplace of Federal Procurement Policy, where she pushed reforms that opened federal contracts to minority-owned organizations.

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