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First Person: Becoming The First Mexican-American Woman Federal Judge

Photo caption: Irma Gonzalez is pictured, March 9, 2017.

Photo by Brooke Ruth

Irma Gonzalez is pictured, March 9, 2017.

First Person: Becoming The First Mexican-American Female Federal Judge


Irma Gonzalez, retired federal judge


Special Feature First Person

KPBS Midday Edition's First Person series tells the stories of average and not-so-average San Diegans in their own words. Their experiences, both universal and deeply personal, offer a unique lens into the news of the day.

Irma Gonzalez was one of six women inducted into the San Diego County Women's Hall of Fame earlier this month.

She was the first Mexican-American woman to serve as a federal judge in the United States.

"Diversity on the bench is so important because the people that come to court come from all different walks of life, different ethnic backgrounds, different religious backgrounds. ... They need to see that the person or the judges in the courtroom are like them, they come from a background that's similar to theirs," Gonzalez said.

The hall of fame is housed in the Women's Museum of California, which is in Liberty Station.

As part of our First Person series, Gonzalez tells us about her journey to the federal court.

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