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Speaker Series: Armand Derfner In Conversation with Deborah Kennedy Kennard

January 20, 2022 @ 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm

CLS welcomes author and attorney Armand Derfner to discuss Justice Deferred: Race and the Supreme Court. Derfner co-authored this book with historian Orville V. Burton, and it is the first account that comprehensively charts the Court’s race jurisprudence. Derfner will be in conversation with Deborah K. Kennard, successful attorney and businesswoman with extensive experience in the nonprofit sector.

Justice Deferred dives into addressing nearly two hundred cases involving America’s racial minorities, the authors probe the parties involved, the justices’ reasoning, and the impact of individual rulings. We learn of heroes such as Thurgood Marshall; villains, including Roger Taney; and enigmas like Oliver Wendell Holmes and Hugo Black. Much of the fragility of civil rights in America is due to the Supreme Court, but as this sweeping history also reminds us, the justices still have the power to make good on the country’s promise of equal rights for all. Tickets are $10 for CLS members and $15 for nonmembers.

This event is in-person and ticketed – To purchase tickets, click here.

To purchase your copy of Justice Deferred: Race and the Supreme Court from Buxton Books, click here.

About the Authors:

Armand Derfner has been a civil rights lawyer for over fifty years. He has been counsel for, among others, the NAACP Legal Defense Fund (LDF) and the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF), and helped desegregate university systems and legislatures across the South. He argued his first Supreme Court case in 1968.

Orville Vernon Burton is the prizewinning author of several books, including The Age of Lincoln. He is Judge Matthew J. Perry Jr. Distinguished Professor of History at Clemson University and Emeritus University Scholar and Professor of History at the University of Illinois.

About Deborah K. Kennard:

Kennard is a graduate of Yale Law School and received her undergraduate degree in Political Science from Duke University, magna cum laude. She is a former managing counsel for Mobil Oil Corporation (now Exxon Mobil Corporation). In that position, she supervised lawyers located in the U.S., London and Singapore who handled legal matters related to the global supply, trading and transportation operations of the company and its affiliates.

She has served on various boards in Washington, D.C., and currently serves on the following nonprofit boards in Charleston, S.C. — Spoleto Festival USA; the Gibbes Museum of Art; WINGS for Kids; and the Charleston-to-Charleston Literary Festival. She is a member of the Executive Committee of the Gibbes Museum of Art and co-chairs the Gibbes’ Distinguished Lecture Series. She has also served on the board of the South Carolina Coastal Conservation League and the Storm Eye Institute of the Medical University of South Carolina. She is married to William E. Kennard, former U.S. Ambassador to the European Union. They live in Charleston, South Carolina, and have one son, Robert, who is a member of High Point University’s Class of 2023.


January 20, 2022
6:00 pm - 7:00 pm