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About the Project

The Chief Justice Shirley S. Abrahamson Legacy Committee sponsors this website.

The committee’s co-chairs are former Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice Janine P. Geske and U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin. The committee’s members are Attorneys Christine Bremer Muggli, Amy Bogost, and Benjamin Wagner.

The committee promotes public understanding of Wisconsin’s first woman justice through projects like these:

  • Dedicating the Wisconsin Historical Society’s Library Reading Room to Chief Justice Abrahamson.
  • Funding an annual Chief Justice Shirley S. Abrahamson award for Wisconsin law students committed to social justice, an independent judiciary, and equal rights for all.
  • Presenting a traveling exhibit for students and the general public to learn about the most influential justice in Wisconsin history and to be inspired to work in public service.
  • Maintaining a website to facilitate sustained study of Chief Justice Abrahamson’s life and work and to communicate with the public about the committee’s events and projects.
  • Developing Chief Justice Abrahamson’s “Tootsie the Goldfish” lesson plan into an interactive learning tool to help students understand how courts decide cases.

Funding for these and other committee ventures is held in trust at the Wisconsin Historical Foundation.

The committee's project team members are:

  • Attorney Colleen Ball, Wisconsin State Public Defender: historical research, writing, and content development for the website and traveling exhibit.
  • Karen Fraley, TEK Consulting LLC: design and development of and the Tootsie the Goldfish video game.
  • Diana K. B. Hoover, Strong Heart Design: graphic design of the traveling exhibit, opening event, and design consultation for the website.
  • Travis Kleckner, TEK Consulting LLC: development of the Tootsie the Goldfish game.
  • Matt Johnson, Matt Johnson Design: illustrations for the Tootsie the Goldfish game.
  • Sarah Milestone, Milestone Consulting + Events: creation of special occasions honoring Chief Justice Abrahamson’s life and career.
  • Erica Fox Gehrig, EFG Preservation: coordination of venues and events showcasing the travelling exhibit.

The Chief Justice Shirley S. Abrahamson Committee is especially grateful to:

  • Daniel N. Abrahamson, who authorized access to his mother’s papers and photographs.
  • Julie Lussier, executive director of the Wisconsin Historical Foundation, and Kate Easton, legislative liaison for the Wisconsin Historical Society, who have guided the committee since its inception.
  • Wisconsin Historical Society archivists Lee Grady, Jennifer Barth, and Joseph Taylor, who provided outstanding, enthusiastic research assistance under challenging circumstances.
  • Gov. Tony Evers for supporting the committee’s work.
  • The many firms and individuals who have donated funds to the Wisconsin Historical Foundation for the purpose of preserving Chief Justice Abrahamson’s legacy.