Lorna E. Lockwood
Women Lawyers ~ Women Leaders Arch
'I've always prided myself in rendering decisions based on common sense rather than strictly on legal precedent'ÌÐ
Lorna Elizabeth Lockwood was born in Douglas, Arizona to Daisy Maude Lincoln and Alfred Collins Lockwood in 1903. In 1913, her family moved to Tombstone where Lockwood later attended high school. During her adolescence, she began to take an interest in law. Her interest in law would lead her down the political road for which she would become most known.
In Lockwood's years after high school she started to consider law as a career. Her father was a lawyer, and she had always dreamed about someday working by her father's side. Lockwood once stated, 'I decided when I was a very little girl that I wanted to be a lawyer. I can't positively say when, but the idea was in the back of my mind.'
In her pursuit to become involved in law, Lockwood decided to attend college. Even though it was not expected for women to continue an education past high school, Lockwood decided that college was her only option if she wanted to pursue a career in law. She was accepted at the University of Arizona, and received a degree from the College of Law in 1925. She has been credited by the University of Arizona for setting the bar for future female law students. At this time, Lockwood was the only female to receive a law degree, and helped to prove that women could receive college degrees as well as men.
After graduating law school, she was admitted to the State Bar, but by this time, her father had been elected to the Arizona Supreme Court. Therefore her dream of working with her father would be unattainable. But she still decided to pursue her passion for law and politics such as her father did. Soon after college in 1939, Lockwood was elected to the Arizona House of Representatives and served for three years. After serving her position in the House of Representatives, she also went on to become the Assistant Attorney General of Arizona from 1949 to 1950 and Maricopa County Superior Judge from 1950 to 1961. After these governmental positions, she served in many other places in the government that would impact the state of Arizona for years to come.
She went on to become well known in the field of delinquency control, and became a director in Professional Women's Clubs, and president of the Arizona Judges Association. Lockwood became active in the Big Sisters and Big Brothers association of Arizona, and served on the Governor's Commission on the Status of Women. Lockwood is most remembered as being the first female to be a Chief Justice of a state Supreme Court, from 1961 to 1975. She was a woman who was highly concerned with the well being of children, which is the main reason she became active in juvenile aid and other related agencies. Perhaps one of her most powerful political influences was her bringing attention to the inequality and injustice for women.
Lockwood's career not only influenced the state of Arizona, but other women who have desired to have a voice in government. Lockwood became a powerful figure in politics in a time where women were steered away from powerful positions. Due to her many achievements, she was named Phoenix Professional Woman of the Year in 1962. In 1971 she was named Builder of a Greater Arizona, and in 1974 she was given the Phoenix Woman of the Year award.
In 1977, Lockwood died in the hospital, but left behind a political legacy that would influence the state of Arizona, and women in general. She has been credited with being a tough judge, opening the door for women pursuing politics, and bringing attention to issues that were not yet considered before her time.
Written By: Stacey Nelson