The Passing of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg

September 18, 2020

Dear fellow members of the Columbia community:

I join everyone in mourning the loss of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who was also one of our most cherished alumnae and faculty colleagues. To be a reformer within an established tradition—and to make the tradition truer to its own principles and premises—is exceedingly difficult and rare in human affairs. Ruth Bader Ginsburg was such a person.

She challenged and changed the legal system, especially with regard to matters of gender equality, deploying the finest of legal skills, and in doing so validated the law while making it immeasurably better. Throughout her life and career she exhibited the essence of courage and the belief that reason and ideas can, indeed, improve the world. We grieve this loss, especially at this moment.


Lee C. Bollinger