U.S. District Judge Alvin W. Thompson Honored with Inaugural Community Leader Award for Promoting Civic Education and Strengthening Democracy

Hartford, Connecticut – U.S. District Judge Alvin W. Thompson has been granted the prestigious Community Leader Award by the Connecticut Democracy Center. The Hartford-based organization, known for its promotion of civic engagement and stewardship of the Old State House, recognizes Judge Thompson for his extensive involvement in educational initiatives centered around the role of courts in upholding the rule of law.

Connecticut’s Chief U.S. District Judge Michael Shea acknowledged Judge Thompson’s commendable commitment to fostering civic education and empowering individuals to actively participate in our democratic society. He commended Thompson’s unwavering efforts to promote awareness of the court system, the Constitution, and the rule of law.

Judge Thompson is both the organizer and chairman of Connecticut’s Public Outreach Committee, which operates under the federal court system. Through this initiative, federal judges, lawyers, and judicial staff collaborate on programs that elucidate the role played by courts in safeguarding democracy. Thompson contributes by visiting schools, participating in panel discussions, facilitating trips to citizen naturalization ceremonies held in federal courthouses, and assisting in organizing summer programs focused on civil and criminal litigation for high school students.

As an active member of the American Bar Association, Judge Thompson seizes the opportunity to serve as co-chairman of its Rule of Law Working Committee, which tailors programs specifically for business lawyers. He recognizes the invaluable benefits of civic education and deems it indispensable for the betterment of our nation. In the trade magazine Business Law Today, Thompson expressed, “The beneficial effects of civic education are not only desirable but necessary for our well-being as a nation. Consequently, as members of the legal profession, we should engage in and promote civic education that will support and strengthen the Rule of Law.”

Alvin W. Thompson’s impressive legal career spans over four decades. He earned his undergraduate degree from Princeton University in 1975 and later obtained his law degree from Yale Law School in 1978. After graduating, Thompson practiced law at Robinson & Cole in Hartford, where he made history in 1991 as the first African American managing partner at a major Connecticut law firm. In 1993, President Bill Clinton appointed him to the federal bench, and between 2009 and 2013, he served as Connecticut’s chief federal judge.

The Connecticut Democracy Center aims to inspire people of all ages to actively engage in civic life and contribute to the strength of their communities. More information about the organization and its awards can be found on their website. The recognition given to Judge Alvin W. Thompson underscores the vital importance of civic education and highlights his unwavering dedication to preserving democracy through the rule of law.