Judge James R. Spencer to Deliver Keynote Address at Fifth-Annual Diversity Day-Feb 11
The Honorable James Randolph Spencer will deliver the keynote address at Elon University School of Law’s Fifth-Annual Diversity Day on Saturday, February 11, 2012. Former United States President Ronald Reagan appointed Judge Spencer to serve as the first African-American Judge of the United States District Court of the Eastern District of Virginia-serving as chief judge from 2004-2011. Prior to his service as a federal judge, he served as the first African-American assigned to the Major Crimes Division in the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the District of Columbia.
Diversity Day is an annual recruitment and service event of Elon Law that introduces minorities who are underrepresented in the legal profession to law school and the law school admissions process. Annually, this event draws high-school and college students and features a keynote presentation, panel discussions by attorneys, law students, admissions professionals, and a law fair with representatives from law schools in North and South Carolina. Former keynote speakers include Attorney Julius Chambers, founder of the UNC Center for Civil Rights; Elaine Jones, former director-counsel and president, NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Funds; Dr. Timothy Tyson, noted author and historian; and Dr. Julianne Malveaux, president of Bennett College for Women.
Diversity Day will take place at the Elon University School of Law School, located at 201 North Greene Street in downtown Greensboro. The program will begin at 9:30 a.m. and conclude at 2 p.m. Lunch will be provided. There is no cost to attend.
The Honorable James Randolph Spencer
James Randolph Spencer was born in Florence, South Carolina in 1949. After graduating from Clark College in Atlanta, Georgia with a Bachelor of Arts in 1971, he attended Harvard Law School where he received his Juris Doctor in 1974.
Judge Spencer was commissioned as a Captain in the United States Army JAG Corps, serving in that capacity from 1975 until 1978. After being honorably discharged from the active duty, from 1978-1983 he worked as an Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia where he was the first African-American assigned to the Major Crimes Division. After he was recommissioned in the U.S. Army Reserves, he served as a Military Judge from 1981-1986. From 1983 until 1986, he served as an Assistant United States District Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia.
On September 9, 1986, former United States President Ronald Reagan nominated Judge Spencer to sit on the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, Richmond Division. On October 8, 1986, the United States Senate confirmed his appointment. He served the Eastern District of Virginia as chief judge from 2004-2011, and he continues to preside over cases in that district. Judge Spencer was the first African-American to be nominated in the Eastern District of Virginia as a federal judge.
Judge Spencer also holds a Master of Divinity from Howard University.