Camarillo, Calif., Oct. 16, 2014 – CSU Channel Islands (CI) invites the public to an evening with retired U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, Thursday, Oct. 30, from 6 to 6:30 p.m. in the Grand Salon. Justice O’Connor will speak about civic engagement, democracy, and her life experiences in a presentation entitled “Democracy in the Digital Age.” This free event is presented by CI’s Political Science and History programs and is open to the public by prior registration. To register, visit

O’Connor was the first woman appointed to the Supreme Court. She was appointed by President Ronald Reagan in 1981 and served until her retirement in 2006. During her 25-year tenure, she earned a reputation for a fair and impartial perspective and was involved in a number of landmark decisions involving issues ranging from abortion and affirmative action to property and voter rights.

Born in Texas in 1930, O’Connor graduated from Stanford University in 1950 with a B.A. in Economics and went on to earn her law degree from Stanford in 1952. Following her graduation from law school, at least 40 law firms refused to interview her for a position as an attorney because she was a woman. She found employment as a deputy county attorney after offering to work for no salary and without an office, sharing space with a secretary.

O'Connor became Assistant Attorney General of Arizona in 1965. She was appointed to fill a vacancy in the Arizona State Senate in 1969 and was re-elected to two terms, becoming the first woman to serve as Majority Leader. In 1975 she was elected Judge of the Maricopa County Superior Court and, in 1979, was elevated to the Arizona State Court of Appeals, where she served until her appointment to the nation’s highest court in 1981.

As the founder of iCivics, a nonprofit dedicated to re-invigorating civic education through interactive learning, O’Connor has brought national attention to the need for more and better civic education to ensure that the next generations of students become knowledgeable and engaged citizens.

“From her earliest career as a deputy county attorney, to her service in the Arizona legislature, to her 25 years on the Supreme Court, to her ongoing work promoting civic education for our young people, Justice O’Connor has been a trailblazer and public servant of the highest order,” said CI President Richard R. Rush. “It is an honor to have Justice O’Connor, whose influence we can still feel daily in our lives, share her story with the CI campus and community.”

“CI's History and Political Science programs are honored to host Justice O'Connor, whose service on the Supreme Court made a lasting imprint on the nation, and who continues to inspire us with her work promoting civic engagement through her organization iCivics,” said Scott Frisch, Professor and Chair of CI’s Political Science program. “We share her commitment to fostering an informed and enlightened electorate through understanding the past and through promoting civil dialogue that facilitates participatory democracy.”

Event parking is complimentary. Once on campus, follow signage to the designated lot. Shuttles will be available to escort guests from the parking lot to the Grand Salon. Free parking is also available at the Camarillo Metrolink Station/Lewis Road parking lot in Camarillo. In order to waive bus fares, riders should present their event registration confirmation when boarding the CI VISTA bus; otherwise, bus fares are $1.25 each way. Buses arrive and depart from the Camarillo Metrolink Station every 30 minutes from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Friday. For exact times, check the schedule at

To register and for more information, visit or contact Merissa Stith, Assistant Manager of Conferences & Events, at 805-437-8548 or

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About California State University Channel Islands
CSU Channel Islands 
(CI) is the only four-year, public university in Ventura County and is known for its interdisciplinary, multicultural and international perspectives, and its emphasis on experiential and service learning. CI’s strong academic programs focus on business, sciences, liberal studies, teaching credentials, and innovative master’s degrees. Students benefit from individual attention, up-to-date technology, and classroom instruction augmented by outstanding faculty research. CI has been designated by the U.S. Department of Education as a Hispanic-Serving Institution and is committed to serving students of all backgrounds from the region and beyond. Connect with and learn more by visiting CI's Social Media.

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