Honorable ROSE ELIZABETH BIRD
(1936 – 1999)
Chief Justice of California (1977 –
The Supreme Court of California convened in
the courtroom of the Earl Warren Building, 350
McAllister Street, Fourth Floor, San Francisco,
California, on March 6, 2000, at 9:00 a.m.
Present: Chief Justice Ronald M. George, presiding,
and Associate Justices Mosk, Kennard, Baxter,
Werdegar, Chin, and Brown.
Officers present: Frederick K. Ohlrich, Clerk;
and Harry Kinney, Supreme Court Marshal.
JUSTICE GEORGE: Good morning. We
meet today to honor Chief Justice Rose Elizabeth
Bird, who led this court from March 1977 to January
of 1987. I would like to begin by introducing
the members of the court. Starting at my far left,
Justice Brown, then Justice Werdegar and Justice
Kennard. To my immediate right is Justice Mosk,
and to his right is Justice Baxter and then Justice
Chin. On behalf of the court, I wish to welcome
Chief Justice Bird's friends and colleagues.
Although I did not serve on the court with Chief
Justice Bird or have much of an opportunity to
know her personally, I served on the superior
court and municipal court benches in Los Angeles
during her tenure as Chief Justice.
Her successor appointed me to chair the Judicial
Council's committee to implement the recommendations
of the Advisory Committee on Gender Bias in the
Courts, a committee that she had created just
before she left office, and the first such committee
focusing on bias in the courts in California and
probably the first anywhere in the United States.
Chief Justice Bird was the first woman appointed
as a justice of the California Supreme Court and,
of course, the first woman to serve as Chief Justice
of California, and Chair of the Judicial Council.
As you can see from the presence of the three
colleagues on the bench to my left, the situation
has changed a great deal since then.
Chief Justice Bird also was the first of her gender
to serve as a cabinet officer for a California
Governor. It is a testament to the rapid change
in our society that the barriers she broke some
quarter of a century ago now seem difficult to
While at the court, Chief Justice Bird also oversaw
many other transitions. Many improvements in the
court's operating procedures were made during
her tenure, including technological innovations.
The advances in court technology were reflected
in several ways, culminating in the purchase of
the first computers for the general use of the
justices and their staffs. She also expanded the
court's hiring process to reach persons who otherwise
might not have been aware of employment opportunities
with the court.
As a jurist, Chief Justice Bird was committed
and dedicated to her role. Her opinions were articulate
and expressed her view on the issues with clarity
and strength. She was a prolific writer while
on the court, filing not only numerous majority
opinions, but many concurring and dissenting opinions
She inspired great loyalty in many staff members
and a variety of individuals also have spoken
of her personal kindness to them, both while she
was on the court and after her departure. In addition,
she demonstrated tremendous courage in carrying
on with her responsibilities and the burdens of
her office despite the extraordinary challenges
she faced relating to her own health.
Chief Justice Bird served for almost ten years
and left a wide-ranging legacy: Her role as the
first woman on the court, her unwavering commitment
to do what she believed to be right, and her efforts
to improve the administration of justice all represent
important landmarks in the history of our court.
I now would like to introduce my colleague, Justice
Joyce Kennard, who came to know Chief Justice
Bird after her own appointment to the court and
who will speak on behalf of our court.
JUSTICE KENNARD: Thank
you very much, Chief Justice George.
Last December, at the age of 63, when she had
barely begun the evening of her life, former Chief
Justice Rose Elizabeth Bird lost her long and
heroic battle against cancer. Although she has
passed to eternal silence, she will never be forgotten.
This woman of intellectual brilliance, extraordinary
courage, compassion and grace has forever left
her imprint on California's history.
Her entire career was devoted to public service;
she embarked on paths where no woman had gone
In 1965, she became the first woman law clerk
on the Nevada Supreme Court; in 1966, she was
the first female deputy public defender hired
in Santa Clara County; in 1975, Governor Jerry
Brown selected her as his Secretary of Agriculture,
the first woman in the state to hold cabinet rank;
and, in 1977, she became the first woman Chief
Justice of California, and the first woman to
ever serve as a justice on the court.
She did indeed reach dizzying heights of success.
But then in 1986, she experienced the pain and
sorrow of defeat when the electorate voted her
out of judicial office.
The years to come were often difficult. She had
a meager income and she was battling cancer. But
she faced life's storms with her customary courage
and, through her many travails, she never ceased
thinking of the welfare of others.
For instance, just one day after undergoing a
mastectomy in the fall of 1996, she made the long
drive from her home in Palo Alto to Oakland, to
attend the memorial service for her friend and
former colleague, Justice Allen Broussard. And
later, during the winter, Rose gave her good winter
coat to a homeless woman who she said needed it
much more than she did.
That was the kind of person she was. Invariably,
people ask me how Rose and I became friends. Shortly
after my appointment to the court in April of
1989, Rose sent me a note welcoming me to the
court and wishing me well.
At that time, I didn't know Rose personally, and
her thoughtfulness touched me deeply. I wrote
back, thanking her. Eventually, we met and became
good friends. It was a friendship filled with
warmth and laughter. I will always remember Rose
as a kind, generous and gracious friend.
Rose championed the interests of the downtrodden.
She was fearlessly committed to her ideals of
liberty and justice for all. In the words of a
mutual friend, Attorney Dale Minami, "She
should be remembered as a strong, brilliant, yet
caring human being who gave heart to the law and
hope to the disadvantaged that justice was available
from the Supreme Court."
In summary, borrowing a phrase from President
John F. Kennedy, "Rose knew the midnight,
as well as the high noon." She understood
the ordeal, as well as the triumph, of the human
heart. She showed that through strength one can
overcome despair. She was a woman of substance,
a woman of character. Her friendship enriched
CHIEF JUSTICE GEORGE:
Thank you very much, Justice Kennard. I now would
like to introduce former Justice Cruz Reynoso,
who was a colleague of Chief Justice Bird when
they both served on the Supreme Court.
JUSTICE REYNOSO: May
it please the court, Mr. Chief Justice and Associate
Justices. Thank you for the opportunity to share
with you remembrances of an extraordinary woman
and Chief Justice of California, Rose Elizabeth
Her sojourn on this planet was not a long one.
Her accomplishments in the service of her fellow
Californians were many and lasting. Foremost,
it seems to me, was her example to us all that
one could implement one's most noble ideals and
live a satisfying and fulfilling life.
I met Chief Justice Bird after she was named to
the bench. I was then serving as an associate
justice of the Court of Appeal in Sacramento.
Aside from meeting her informally, I was soon
asked to join the Supreme Court on assignment.
I was the beneficiary of a new policy implemented
by her whereby trial judges and justices of all
courts could be assigned to sit with this court
in the absence of a Supreme Court justice.
To join her and to join Justice Mosk, whom I have
known since his service as Attorney General, and
the other justices was, for me, a fulfilling and
challenging professional task.
She personally took time to extend the invitation,
to explain the Supreme Court internal practices,
to make me feel welcome, and to later thank me
for service to this court. A few years thereafter,
I joined the court. I was honored that Chief Justice
Rose Bird administered my oath of office.
The press reported, at that time, that there were
tensions among the justices. So, since I knew
and respected each justice I was determined, I
told myself, to bring peace to the court. However,
when I arrived, I looked in vain for the reported
friction. Rather, I found vigorous but respectful
agreement and disagreement among the justices.
Justice Frank Newman, my former professor at Boalt
Hall and my court colleague, referred to our Wednesday
conferences as the best seminars in which he had
ever participated. That atmosphere of vigor and
humanity was nurtured by the Chief Justice.
She had come to her position as Chief Justice
at an age young of years, but full of accomplishments.
She graduated from Boalt Hall in 1965, at a time
when women represented no more than three percent
of the bar, and whose presence on the bench was
rare. She was 41 years of age when she was named
Chief Justice by Governor Edmund G. (Jerry) Brown,
He tells of meeting her at Berkeley's International
House shortly after he left the seminary. She
immediately impressed him, he recalls, as a person
who was highly intelligent, highly competent and
The Chief Justice had been raised poor, first
in Arizona and later in New York, where her mother
supported her and her two brothers by working
at a factory job. Before attending law school,
she worked as a legal secretary. She knew life
as those without power live it. The perspective
of those who do not have power guided her sense
When she graduated from Boalt Hall, after clerking
for the Nevada Supreme Court, her first attorney
position was that of a public defender of Santa
Clara County. She had already begun her role as
a trailblazer. She had been “ascendicated”
to this court, the first woman law clerk at the
Nevada Supreme Court, and she was the first woman
to work as a public defender in San Jose.
She, like the other seven or eight attorneys,
worked long hours. The inside joke, according
to Judge Takei, who then worked with the Chief
Justice, was that the defense attorneys spent
more time in jail than their clients. The Chief
Justice quickly advanced from trial attorney to
senior trial deputy, to chief of the unit working
on appeals and writs.
Judge Takei remembers an incident which typified
the dedication that the Chief Justice had to her
clients. She had defended a woman charged with
prostitution. The woman was poor and had recently
arrived in the city from a rural Indian reservation.
The accused was acquitted, but she had no place
to go. The Chief took her to her home and subsequently
paid for her return trip to her native reservation.
By the early- and mid-1970's, the Chief Justice
was teaching at Stanford as a clinical professor.
She and Anthony Amsterdam taught a course in criminal
defense. My UCLA colleague, William Warren, was
then teaching at Stanford, and taught a course
on consumer protection with the Chief Justice.
Professor Warren described her as a totally dedicated,
inspiring and talented teacher.
Her students voted her the most popular professor.
As a clinical professor, she had what one former
student called "the miraculous power to give
strength." She was close to her students;
many later worked with her in her executive and
Governor Jerry Brown, then newly elected, named
Chief Justice Bird as Secretary of Agricultural
Services, the first woman again “ascendicated”
ever to hold a cabinet position in the state government.
In that position, she stretched her energies even
more. In short order, she incorporated lay persons
into professional commissions, banned the short-handled
hoe, and regulated toxic waste.
I learned only recently that her cancer which
eventually took her life appeared while she was
in state service. Her time, she may have felt,
was limited and there was much she wanted to accomplish.
Democracy, we all know, is a most difficult form
of government. I serve as vice-chair of the United
States Commission on Civil Rights. Too often when
we have hearings on police-community tensions,
the public officials, mayors, district attorneys,
police chiefs and sheriffs testify that all is
well in the community. Citizen surveys confirm
strong support for the police, yet dozens of church
and community leaders, as well as countless individuals,
will follow with their own testimony questioning
actions they consider seriously hurtful to the
citizenry. It is hard to give voice to a political
minority when officials are beholden to an electoral
majority. At the same time, the people may speak,
but political realities impede implementing that
public will. Thus, poll after poll indicate that
Californians are willing to pay more for a head
of lettuce or a pound of carrots to enhance the
lives of farmworkers. Yet that public opinion,
supportive of farmworkers, had not realized its
potential until then Secretary Rose Bird structured
the Agricultural Labor Relations Act. She understood
democracy, it seems to me, and made it work.
My own observation is that as Chief Justice, she
had three passions. Her first passion was the
law. She would agree with Daniel Webster that
“The law, it has honored us, may we honor
it.” Chief Justice Rose Bird honored the
law, even when she disagreed with it.
Her second passion related to the first, an abiding
faith that the law should protect all, the weak
and the strong. Those who were weak in political
or economic power could look to the black robes
for protection, be they consumers, renters, farmworkers
or those politically unloved.
The third passion was her conviction that justice
would be best served if those black robes were
on the shoulders of judges representing both genders
and all ethnic and racial groups who make California
Those who worked most closely with the Chief speak
of her as headstrong and stubborn, yet gentle
in compassion. They agree that she was an inspiring
During her tenure, the body politic of California
changed. For decades, there had been an unstated
agreement among the political parties that the
judiciary would not be the subject of partisan
I recall my own 1976 appointment to the Court
of Appeal. Chief Justice Donald Wright called
to congratulate me. He advised me that I need
not appear at the constitutionally required hearing
and assured me that I would be confirmed in light
of my background. A few weeks thereafter he called
with the expected good news, that I had been confirmed.
That was it.
Just over five years thereafter when I was named
to this court, the change was dramatic, the hearing
was contentious, many witnesses appeared and the
vote was divided. Partisan politics were in full
During Chief Justice Rose Bird's tenure, she was
subjected to several recall petition campaigns
and to two confirmation votes. She understood
that court decisions which angered powerful groups
or protected nonmajoritarian rights would jeopardize
her position. She remained true to her oath of
office, she enforced the Constitution and applied
it equally to all.
As a member of the American Bar Association's
committee to select recipients of the annual Thurgood
Marshall Award, I have reviewed hundreds of attorney
and judicial profiles. Many judges, federal and
state, have shown great courage; but no judge,
in my view, has been more courageous than Chief
Justice Rose Bird, who performed her judicial
tasks in the face of physical and political threats.
She suffered a vote of nonconfirmation and retired
from the bench in 1987.
There is life after the bench. Perhaps out of
the public's glare the true character of Chief
Justice Rose Bird can be better understood. She
lived a private life. She volunteered in a food
kitchen which served those in need. She assisted
the East Palo Alto Law Clinic which represents
the poor. She cared for her elderly mother and
loved her dog, Nellie.
It was in 1986 that she met Willene Gunn. Ms.
Gunn tells of seeing the Chief Justice, whom she
did not know at that time, during mass each Sunday.
She and the Chief would slowly walk their elderly
mothers to the pews. The Chief and her mother
would sit behind Ms. Gunn and her mother.
Ms. Gunn's mother suffered from a condition that
caused her to sneeze. Each Sunday, as the priest
began to preach, her mother would sneeze perhaps
20 times in a row, long and loud. Eventually,
a time came when the priest began to preach and
miraculously no sneeze occurred. The Chief, described
by Ms. Gunn as that “tall, elegant woman”
tapped Ms. Gunn on the shoulder and mused, "She
missed her cue." That, Ms. Gunn tells us,
was the beginning of a fast and enduring friendship.
The year they met was 1986, precisely the time
that the Chief was under vigorous political attack.
Yet she took time to care for her mother and make
new friends. Father Eugene Boyle, who served Palo
Alto's St. Anne's Chapel, refers to Chief Justice
Bird as a person of deeply religious principles,
those of truth, justice and compassion. The description,
it seems to me, is apt.
A month ago, Boalt Hall celebrated the unveiling
of photographs and one painting of Boalt graduates
who have served on the California Supreme Court.
Justice Mosk happened to be there. There were
historic giants like Chief Justice Traynor. There,
too, were my own colleagues, Justices Allen Broussard
and Frank Newman, and, of course, Justice Kathryn
Werdegar, who graces this court, was also present.
Prominent among the photographs was that of an
extraordinary woman and Chief Justice, Rose Bird.
I entertain a deep sense of pride and satisfaction
in sharing that space. I am proud to have been
a friend and colleague of Chief Justice Rose Elizabeth
Bird. History will note her trailblazing career
and the good she did for us all.
Thank you very much.
CHIEF JUSTICE GEORGE:
Thank you very much, Justice Reynoso. I now would
like to introduce Mr. Scott Sugarman, a former
research attorney for and friend of Chief Justice
Bird, and now a well-respected criminal defense
attorney in the Bay Area.
MR. SCOTT SUGARMAN:
May it please the court.
I am honored to have been invited by Chief Justice
George and the associate justices of the Supreme
Court to speak at this tribute for Chief Justice
Rose Elizabeth Bird. I knew Chief Justice Bird
for nearly 30 years.
We met in the early 1970's, when I was her student
at Stanford Law School. She taught an advanced
course in criminal procedure, a very demanding
clinical seminar. She was widely regarded as one
of the best teachers on the faculty because of
her remarkable devotion to her students, her insight
and intelligence, and her commitment to teaching
law students to be real lawyers.
After she was confirmed as Chief Justice of California
in 1977, she asked me to work as her law clerk.
I did so for nearly three years. There, she continued
to be my teacher and mentor, as she was a mentor
to all the law clerks who worked with her. And,
for the years that followed my clerkship, until
the day she died, she was my friend.
I want to share with you what it was like to work
for her, about some of the qualities of character
she demonstrated every day.
She was extraordinarily hardworking. She worked
days, nights, weekends, holidays; it did not matter.
There was work to be done and she was going to
do it all. And she demanded no less of her staff.
Let me tell you about my first day.
I drove from the East Coast to San Francisco,
to begin my clerkship with the Chief Justice.
I reached my destination on a Thursday evening.
On Friday morning, I called her to tell her that
I had arrived and she told me to meet her later
We spoke in her chambers about the vacation which
I had just concluded, which, I must note, turned
out to be the last vacation I would have for some
time. At the end of our talk she told me that
three days later, on Monday, the Supreme Court
would commence its fall calendar. The court would
hear oral arguments in 25 or so cases during that
week. She then pointed to a three-foot-high stack
of documents sitting on the corner of her desk—the
court memoranda and briefs for that week's calendar.
Could I, she asked softly, review all of those
cases and discuss them with her on Sunday afternoon,
two days later? I blanched. The task seemed impossible.
I meekly suggested an alternative, that I meet
with her before oral argument each morning during
the week to discuss the cases to be argued that
day. She agreed. And each and every morning, bright
and early, we discussed the cases to be heard
In 1978, when she had been Chief Justice only
a year, the biggest political issue of the day
came to the Supreme Court—the constitutionality
of Proposition 13. Proposition 13 radically altered
the payment of property taxes in California, and
thus changed the way California was governed then,
and to this day. The initiative had passed with
the support of a substantial majority of the voters.
Predictably, within days of its passage, challenges
to Prop. 13 from cities, counties and others throughout
the state poured into the court. The way in which
Chief Justice Bird dealt with that case illustrates
much about her character.
Once the briefs were in, the Chief's instructions
to her law clerks were simple: Read all the petitions
and evaluate the best arguments that could be
made about the constitutionality of Proposition
13. No prejudgment, no stacking the deck.
Once the Supreme Court voted to hear those petitions,
the case was on the fast track. The Chief's clerks
soon met with her to discuss the issues raised
in that case, and how relevant prior judicial
opinions related to the issues presented. She
did not want law clerks who were compliant, who
would only mirror what she wanted to hear. She
asked for, and got, our independent views.
After she personally reviewed the briefs and applicable
precedents, she told us that, on reflection, she
was deeply troubled by the fact that homeowners
sitting side by side, with homes of the same value,
would be required to pay very different amounts
in taxes to the state for the same public services.
Chief Justice Bird concluded that making those
homeowners pay different taxes violated the equal
protection clause of the United States Constitution.
She held strong views about the importance of
equal treatment in our society and, in her view,
Proposition 13 treated identically situated individuals
Her opinion in Amador Valley v. State Board
of Equalization (1978) 22 Cal.3d 208 was
an open book of her thoughts and expressed her
views on what a judge must do. She believed in
the people and their right to govern their own
lives. In the very first sentence of her opinion,
she wrote that judges must accord great deference
to the expressed will of the people. A judge must
construe an initiative "so that the will
of the people is given full weight and authority."
However, she explained that if this or any initiative
or legislative act was in conflict with the United
States Constitution, judges were duty bound to
uphold the mandate of the Constitution. As she
wrote, "judges . . . must be devoted to the
preservation of the great constitutional principles
which history has bequeathed to us."
In her opinion, she was quick to admit that her
conclusion that Proposition 13 was unconstitutional
had not come easily. She acknowledged that the
issue was close and that the emotions on the question
ran high. However, particularly in such an environment,
she wrote, "a judge must follow the law and
do what it requires."
Each of the six other judges on the Supreme Court—including
a man she admired and respected greatly, Justice
Matthew Tobriner—concluded that the initiative
was constitutional. It is little short of astounding
that she was willing to stand alone in opposition
to Proposition 13 just two months before her first
confirmation election in 1978. It would have been
easy to join the court’s six-member majority
and stay silent. Her vote could not alter the
court's decision to uphold the constitutionality
of Proposition 13. However, she believed that
to abandon her true understanding of the mandate
of the Constitution would betray her core responsibility
as a judge. While she understood that her expressed
opinion might cost her the election and her office
as Chief Justice of California, she would not
bend to adopt a course she believed was contrary
to her duty.
She knew that powerful political forces would
be arrayed against her. She knew she could not
defend herself other than in her written opinion.
Yet she truly had the courage of her convictions,
and a fundamental belief in the independence of
the judiciary. It is her courage and her integrity
that shine through.
Just a few weeks ago, Justice Kathryn Werdegar
of this court delivered an address at Boalt Hall
on women on the bench. At the end of her thoughtful
remarks, she observed that women on the bench
served as a role model.
Chief Justice Bird was not just a role model to
women, and especially young women lawyers, who
knew her or knew of her. Gender was not a dividing
line here. She was the role model for all young
She was, and is, an unequaled model of integrity
and fidelity to the mandates of the Constitution
and the Bill of Rights. As her decision in Amador
Valley illustrates, she was a judicial example
of character, strength and courage.
Predictably, Chief Justice Bird's opinion in the
Proposition 13 case garnered much attention in
the press. I think it is fair to say that no judge
in California has ever endured as much day-to-day
critical commentary, speculation and coverage
as Chief Justice Bird. Yet, for all of that commentary,
it is little short of shocking that so little
has been said about the scholarship of the body
of her opinions.
Whether she was writing about a poor woman's access
to government funding for an abortion as in Committee
to Defend Reproductive Rights v. Meyers (1982)
29 Cal.3d 252, or the right of the family of a
rich and famous man to control the commercial
exploitation of his likeness and life's work as
in Lugosi v. Universal Pictures (1979)
25 Cal.3d 813, or the ban on the admission of
statements taken from suspects in violation of
their right to remain silent as in People
v. Rucker (1980) 26 Cal.3d 368, her opinions
reflect exhaustive research, principled decisionmaking
and compelling analytical thought.
While I and some of my colleagues concluded our
clerkships with the Chief Justice some 20 years
ago, the clarity of her opinions and her commitment
to individual rights and judicial independence
remain powerful guides to our understanding of
new cases and new controversies.
Maybe because she was the first woman to serve
as a law clerk in the Nevada Supreme Court, or
because she was the first woman to serve as a
deputy public defender in Santa Clara County,
or because she was the first woman to serve as
a cabinet officer in the State of California,
or because she was the first woman to serve on
the California Supreme Court, Chief Justice Bird
was keenly sensitive to the struggles of the outsider
and the dispossessed, of the power exercised by
the "haves" on the "have nots,"
of the power used by government agents and officers
on those who are powerless.
She was a passionate advocate for justice and
fair and equal treatment. While she was well aware
of the role of the Supreme Court as a court which
set precedent, she firmly believed that the court
must hear cases to do justice, especially for
those whose access to the legislative or executive
branches was limited or denied. While she believed
every person was entitled to justice and equal
treatment under the law, she spoke with a rare
passion for those who were powerless or penniless,
neglected or notorious.
Chief Justice Bird expressed her vision more eloquently
than I can recreate, in the last speech she gave
as Chief Justice in January of 1987, at the Annual
Law School Deans' Luncheon. There, she said:
"Our humanity informs us and instructs us
in what it is to live lives of decency and dignity.
As lawyers and judges, we bring unique perspective
to our humanity that, if used wisely and well,
can enhance the quality of justice in our society.
“That is not a task for tomorrow. It is
something we must live every day. And if we live
it fully — with all of our intelligence,
compassion and courage — then we will have
truly fulfilled the promise of justice our titles
“If we judges and lawyers are not to be
popular, let it be because we are standing on
the forefront of protecting people's rights during
a time of transition. Let it be because we have
the courage to represent unsympathetic individuals
and make difficult rulings in order to give life
and breath to our constitutional guarantees.
“Let it be because we have the integrity
to do justice, even though such actions may be
met with criticism and disapproval. Let it be
because we see our role from the perspective of
its noble traditions, not from the pressured viewpoint
of the moment.
“Let it be because we stand up for a just
society and stand firm for the rule of law.”
At a similar tribute in this court in 1984 to
the late Chief Justice Phil Gibson, Justice Mosk
told the assembled jurists and guests that "[t]here
were no sacred cows to Phil Gibson. Wrong was
wrong, no matter how influential the perpetrator."
That observation is equally applicable to Chief
Justice Rose Elizabeth Bird.
From the same place inside her from which came
her passionate commitment to justice came her
enormous caring and compassion for the men and
women around her. Not a birthday, anniversary,
or holiday came which she did not remember with
a personal card or gift. During the winter holidays,
her chambers would be filled with laughter and
good food, much of which the Chief Justice personally
prepared. For each staff member, she obtained
an individual memento or gift, tailored to his
or her traits. She never bought 20 identical pens
or pet rocks, but spent the time and effort to
find some gift that would fit the recipient. And,
at Thanksgiving or the New Year, she would send
flowers to our homes.
We, who were fortunate enough to serve as her
law clerks, and to work with her, thus learned
lessons not just by her instruction, but by the
life she lived and the decisions she made each
Her beacon is now gone. However, her spirit, her
integrity, her brilliance, her vision is preserved
in our hearts and minds, and is evident in the
hundreds of judicial opinions which she authored
and in which she participated during her nearly
ten years as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court.
Her legacy continues to inspire those who knew
and worked with her and will enlighten and invigorate
any who take the time to learn from her.
CHIEF JUSTICE GEORGE:
Thank you very much, Mr. Sugarman. I again want
to express the court's appreciation to those who
have contributed their special and memorable remarks
to this morning's memorial session. In accordance
with our custom, it is ordered that the proceedings
of this memorial session be spread in full upon
the minutes of the Supreme Court and published
in the Official Reports of the opinions of this
court, and that a copy of these proceedings be
sent to Chief Justice Bird's family.
(Derived from Supreme Court minutes and 22