Thomas Jefferson

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Court is in Session with Sotomayor

Posted 09/22/2010 by Esther Turcios

TJ appeals to the supreme court, or at least gets the chance to meet a Supreme Court Justice!

Pictured from the ILF are: Le'Brell West, Elijah Rene, Marlon Rudolph, Alex Carter, Denzel Truesdale, Ricky Jones, Emaan Wilson-Parson, Emmitt Hurd, along with a Professor from the University of Denver College of Law .

On August 24, 2010 the Thomas Jefferson Inspired Leaders of the Future Organization (ILF) along with its leader Danny Showers, had the opportunity to attend a special event at DU’s Sturm College of Law where they met with United States Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor. “It was a great day!” said Showers.

Students from colleges and high schools across Colorado attended the forum at DU where eight members of the ILF, as well as two members from TJ’s debate team, attended the event. Senior Le’brell West, also a member of the ILF, was asked by the university to present a question to Justice Sotomayor.

“It was a big honor. It felt good because a lot of people don’t get to do that,” said West. “I think she gave me the focus that encouraged me even more to graduate and go to college.”

Representing all the TJ Spartans, West stepped up to the microphone and asked Justice Sotomayor, “What gave you the motivation to accomplish the things you have accomplished?”  Justice Sotomayor had a lot to say in response, but one thing in particular that West said he really remembered her saying was, “Every time you fall you need to get back up, no matter what.”

West wasn’t the only one excited to talk to a Supreme Court Justice; DU was filled with high school and college students waiting to ask Justice Sotomayor questions. “There were five people lined up with questions to ask her, which helped open up the discussion for students to ask questions. They asked questions about her life, goals, and about her success,” said Senior Alex Carter.

The Inspired Leaders of the Future Organization at TJ is operated in conjunction with the University of Denver’s Center for Multicultural Excellence. DU Program Director Tracy Adams-Peters came to TJ with the idea of starting up this organization – aimed specifically at student s- and TJ gladly accepted. The ILF is a yearlong interactive program at TJ which consists of nine students: Le’brell West, Marlon Rudolph, Alex Carter, Danzeal Truesdale, Ricky Jones, Emaan Wilson-Parson, Elijah Rene, Emmitt Hurd, and Antonio Clark.

Showers said that these students have the chance to, “meet with influential and key members of the business community, and they also have meetings at school and at key locations in Colorado in different aspects of society, for example the Brown Palace.”

The ILF encourages strong parent involvement, says Showers, which will help them achieve the main goal of the organization which, according to Showers, is to “take these nine individuals and better prepare them to meet the challenges of life and help them become successful in all of their endeavors.”

Showers says, “I hope that these ILF students take their work with them and it helps them deal with their individual strengths in different aspects of society.”