Speak up and have your voice heard. That was the message that Chief Judge Sandra L. Lynch aimed to send to the graduating students at her alma mater, Boston University. Judge Lynch spoke before the graduating seniors at Boston University on Sunday.
Judge Lynch is currently the Chief Judge of the First Circuit Court of Appeals. She graduated from Boston University Law School in 1971.
In her Baccalaureate address at Marsh Chapel, Judge Lynch urged the seniors to speak their minds and make their country better.
The Baccalaureate address was part of the regular Sunday service at Marsh Chapel. Later that day, Judge Lynch was honored with an honorary Doctor of Laws degree at the Commencement ceremonies.
A civil rights advocate, Judge Lynch spoke of her adventures and tribulations during protest marches for civil rights, where she was cursed and tear-gassed.
Judge Lynch spoke about her trailblazing past, and how she became the first female judge of the First Circuit Court of Appeals.
Democracy, she said, provides the students with the tools needed to address many of the problems the students may face in the future.
She also hailed civic participation and urged the graduates to take a greater role, quoting one of Boston University’s most famous graduates, Martin Luther King, Jr.
Throughout her career, Judge Lynch has embodied the very principles she articulated in her address. She is well-known for her dissent in a court ruling where the court found that rape didn’t meet the legal definition of serious bodily harm, prompting a change in the law.