William Mitchell College of Law and Minnesota Women Lawyers will present a free screening of “Girl from Birch Creek,” a 58-minute film about Rosalie Wahl ’67, Minnesota’s first woman Supreme Court justice, Tuesday, Jan. 29, 2013 at 4 pm in the William Mitchell College of Law Auditorium.
“Girl from Birch Creek,” which gets its title from the area of Kansas where Wahl was born, tells the story of a woman who worked tirelessly for equal justice, regardless of race, gender or economic status.
Wahl is one of Mitchell’s most distinguished alumni. She came to the law school at the age of 38. When she graduated in 1967, she was 44 years old and the mother of five. Ten years later she was appointed to the Minnesota Supreme Court, a post she held until her retirement in 1994.
While on the court, Wahl headed two Supreme Court task forces charged with the study of race and gender bias in the state’s judicial system. The reports developed by these task forces continue to have an impact on Minnesota’s efforts to fairly serve all citizens.
In addition to serving on the Supreme Court, Wahl worked as an assistant state public defender and full-time faculty member at Mitchell. She also helped launch the law school’s nationally recognized clinical program, which was one of the first in the country and is now named in her honor.
The documentary was produced by Lightshed Productions and narrated by Nina Totenberg, National Public Radio’s award-winning legal affairs correspondent whose reports air regularly on NPR’s critically acclaimed newsmagazines All Things Considered, Morning Edition, and Weekend Edition.
The presentation of the documentary will be followed by a panel discussion moderated by Star Tribune columnist Lori Sturdevant, who is currently writing a book about the life and legacy of Justice Wahl.
Application will be made for 1 Elimination of Bias CLE credit. A reception follows.