Justice Thurgood Marshall

Thurgood Marshall was a lawyer, the founder of the NAACP Legal Defense & Education Fund, and the first African-American justice. Of the 32 cases he argued before the Supreme Court, he won 29. An important force in the 20th century civil rights movement, he helped to shape the legal landscape of the United State.

Thurgood Marshall was one of the greatest agents of change of the 20th century, changing laws to fight racial segregation. Many bills related to voting and discrimination were based on his arguments in court cases. 

Middle School student Vijay wrote his t-shirt prize winning hero essay on Thurgood Marshall for the hero traits of perseverance, courage and righteousness.

"I admire Thurgood Marshall because he challenged the boundaries created by prejudice, and successfully won. I can especially relate this to myself as an Indian in America because of the ongoing prejudice towards people from Southern Asia."

Thurgood Marshall

By: Vijay
Thurgood Marshall was appointed as the first African American Supreme Court Justice and advanced desegregation in the United States.

Thurgood Marshall

By: Xenia Shin / Staff Writer

Artwork Inspired by Thurgood Marshall

Artists often honor those that who have contributed positively to humanity. As spoken by Justice Thurgood Marshall, "In recognizing the humanity of our fellow human beings, we pay ourselves the highest tribute". Below are some portraits honoring his contribution. 

Thurgood Marshall - Reigning Supreme

By: Michael Mahue Moore

Artwork inspired by Thurgood Marshall: "I was inspired by the works of this man and his march towards equality."

Thurgood Marshall

By: Alex from Lafayette

A salute to Thurgood Marshall for ending racial segregation in schools by young student Alexander from LaFayette.


Video Tribute to Thurgood Marshall made by Elementary School students

Thurgood Marshall (1:23)

Producer: Nathan Wolin

This short film was created at El Morro Elementary School to honor the legendary Thurgood Marshall.

From the MY HERO Library

Thurgood Marshall: American Revolutionary

By: Juan Williams

Thurgood Marshall is remembered by many as a rather stern, gruff Supreme Court justice, but he was also a courageous young lawyer who took on institutional segregation and racism, winning the 1954 Brown v. Board of Education decision, and a witty, charismatic man-about-town who lived life with gusto and was often seen in the company of prizefighter Joe Louis, singer Cab Calloway, and other leading lights of the African-American community. 


Official Website of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund

"LDF was launched at a time when the nation’s aspirations for equality and due process of law were stifled by widespread state-sponsored racial inequality.  From that era to the present, LDF’s mission has always been transformative: to achieve racial justice, equality, and an inclusive society."

Related Pages

Thurgood Marshall Lesson Plan

By: Laura Nietzer
Multimedia curated teacher resource and learning outcomes. MY HERO celebrates the accomplishment of Thurgood Marshall. Thurgood Marshall was born on July 2, 1908.

Black History Month | Civil Rights and Social Justice Heroes

By: MY HERO Staff
MY HERO Celebrates Black History Month. Be Inspired by African American Civl Rights and Social Justice Heroes.

Black Lives Matter | Voices of Hope and Change

By: Shannon Luders-Manuel
These 21st century heroes are moving America forward in racial justice and equality.


By: Shannon Luders-Manuel
Juneteenth, or African American Freedom Day, celebrates the Emancipation Proclamation, which abolished slavery in the United States in 1865. The day is celebrated on June 19th, the month the proclamation was read to the slaves in Texas -- the last state to uphold slavery after the proclamation went into effect in January of that year.

Our Curators


Hero Stories curated by MY HERO General Editor and Story Director Shannon Luders-Manuel. 


Short films curated by MY HERO International Film Festival director Wendy Milette


Artwork curated by MY HERO Arts Education and Gallery director Giselle Villatoro. 


Audio curated by MY HERO Audio director Stu Pearlman. 


Newswire stories curated by MY HERO Newswire director Betty Bailey. 

Organizer created on 6/28/2018 5:53:30 PM by Staff Writer

Last edited 7/11/2021 6:18:45 PM by Kitty Richardson