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"A state of war is not a blank check for the President when it comes to the rights of the Nation's citizens."
Justice Sandra Day O'Connor

Oliver Hill

(1907-2007) Oliver Hill was a prominent civil rights attorney from Richmond, Virginia, who helped end “separate but equal” laws in the United States. Hill received his bachelor’s and law degrees from Howard University. He worked closely with Thurgood Marshall on a number of civil rights cases and was co-counsel on Davis v. County School Board of Prince Edward County, one of  several cases consolidated into Brown v. Board of Education.

In 1949, Hill was elected to the Richmond City Council, becoming the first African American to serve on that body. Hill was named 1959 Lawyer of the Year by the National Bar Association. He also received the Justice Thurgood Marshall Award from the American Bar Association in 1993. Hill was honored by the NAACP in 1999 with the Harvard Medal of Freedom for his role in Brown. He died in 2007 at the age of 100 at his home in Virginia.


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