John Charles Thomas, an American attorney and former justice of the Supreme Court of Virginia, visited Eastern Washington University Thursday, March 21, to speak with students, faculty and administration.
Thomas’ visit was the result of a recent collaboration between Eastern Washington University and the Gonzaga University School of Law, a collaboration that will allow EWU students to complete their bachelor’s degrees in three years before transferring to GU pursue a degree in law.
It was with this new partnership in mind that Thomas extended his time to EWU, having initially traveled to Spokane as the 2019 Justice-in-residence for the Center for Civil and Human Rights at Gonzaga Law.
During his visit, Thomas, who was the first African American appointed to the Supreme Court of Virginia in 1983, spoke of civil rights advocacy within the law and the importance of being educated in the liberal arts.
“If you are going to be the citizen of a democratic government, you need to have the skills of freedom,” said Thomas. “To speak well, write well and know what you are talking about. The arts are the skills of freedom.”
Visit Gonzaga University’s Newsletter to learn more about EWU’s recent partnership with GU Law.