Connect with us

Local News

Judge Joyce Williams Warren is recognized at UA Little Rock Law School with a new fellowship



Little Rock, Arkansas – Retired Judge Joyce Williams Warren established the Judge Joyce Williams Warren Jurist-in-Residence Fellowship at UA Little Rock William H. Bowen School of Law with a $50,000 donation.

Judge Warren’s husband, James M. “Butch” Warren, pledged the gift, which will be used to bring a working or retired judge to teach a course at Bowen School of Law for a semester. Additionally, the gift will be used to plan events that will enable students and alumni to concentrate on a legal issue pertaining to juvenile law or the role of the Arkansas judiciary.

“A multitude of honors have been bestowed upon my wife, Joyce, to celebrate her amazing legal career,” Butch Warren said. “I’ve often wondered how I could also honor her — and Bowen presented this opportunity to establish a jurist-in-residence fellowship in her honor. I am blessed to honor Joyce, the love of my life, in a way that will benefit others and add to all of the other ‘firsts’ she has accomplished.”

As the first Black woman to graduate from Bowen School of Law in 1976, Judge Warren is among the school’s most distinguished alums.

Once again, she created history in 1977 when she was appointed as the first-ever Black law clerk to Associate Justice Darrell Hickman of the Arkansas Supreme Court.

She would begin working for Bill Clinton, the state’s attorney general at the time, later that year as his assistant attorney general.

When Warren was appointed as a juvenile court judge in 1983, she became the first Black female judge in the state.

In addition, she will go down in history as the first woman to have established a jurist-residence fellowship program at William H. Bowen School of Law.

“This endowment will benefit both Bowen and the community at large,” Jonathan Q. Warren, the eldest son of the Warrens and a 2005 Bowen graduate himself, said. “Undoubtedly, this will only reflect upon, recognize, and advance my mother’s legacy and influence; the name Judge Joyce Williams Warren will live forever at Bowen.”

Jamie Warren, the middle son of the Warrens, expressed his pride in having a mother who is committed to helping others.

“I’m extremely proud to have a mother who chose a life of service dedicated to helping children and families,” Jamie Warren said. “This fellowship spotlights her as an enduring beacon of light.”

The youngest of the Warren boys, Justin, shared his opinions, saying, “To me, the fellowship means my mom is a legal rock star.” All I can do is aspire to be as successful in my career as she has been.

Judge Warren is incredibly appreciative of this homage and believes it to be a lovely, enduring gift that she can’t wait to see applied at Bowen in the future.

“I am ecstatic that other jurists will have an opportunity to be at Bowen and use their expertise to educate students and alumni.”

The law school anticipates accepting its first jurist in the 2030–2031 academic year, and the fellowship funding is anticipated to be provided over the next five years.

This comes part of the larger Centennial Campaign which is UA Little Rock’s largest fundraising effort ever, which is aiming to raise $250 million by 2027.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *