Chief Justice of the Connecticut Supreme Court to Speak at UB Undergraduate Commencement

Richard A. Robinson

Richard RobinsonThe Chief Justice of the Connecticut Supreme Court, Richard A. Robinson, will serve as principal speaker for the University of Bridgeport’s May 2021 Undergraduate Commencement Ceremony. “Chief Justice Robinson’s life and career profoundly reflect the professional aspirations of the University,” says Board of Trustees Chair Robert Berchem. “I’m delighted he will be speaking to our graduates.”

The Honorable Richard A. Robinson was born December 10, 1957 in Stamford, Connecticut. He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts Degree from the University of Connecticut in 1979 and received a Juris Doctor degree from West Virginia University School of Law in 1984. He was admitted to the West Virginia Bar and the Connecticut Bar, and is a member of the U.S. District Court, Northern District of West Virginia and the U.S. District Court, Connecticut.

From 1985 to 1988, Justice Robinson was Staff Counsel for the City of Stamford Law Department. In 1988, he became Assistant Corporation Counsel in Stamford where he remained until his appointment as a Judge of the Superior Court in 2000. He remained a Superior Court Judge for the next seven years during which time he served as Presiding Judge (Civil) for the New Britain Judicial District; Presiding Judge (Civil) and Assistant Administrative Judge for the Ansonia/Milford Judicial District; and Presiding Judge (Civil) for the Stamford Judicial District. He was appointed as a Judge of the Connecticut Appellate Court on December 10, 2007, a Justice of the Supreme Court on December 19, 2013, and the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court on May 3, 2018.

Justice Robinson’s career is complemented by an array of public and judicial service. He served as President of the Stamford Branch of the NAACP (1988-1990); General Counsel for the Connecticut Conference of the NAACP (1988 - 2000); President of the Assistant Corporation Counsel’s Union (AFSCME) (1989 - 2000); Commissioner of the Connecticut Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities (1997 - 2000); Chair of the Connecticut Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities (1999 - 2000); New Haven Inn of Court member (2002 - present); Judicial Education Curriculum Committee member (2002 - 2014); Judicial Education Committee member (2003 - 2014); Faculty at several Judicial Institutes as well as spring and fall lectures (2003 - present); Civil Commission member (2005 - 2014); Court Annexed Mediator (2005 - 2014); Lawyers Assistance Advisory Board member (2007 - present); Bench-Bar Foreclosure Committee (2007 - 2014); Legal Internship Committee (2013 - 2017); Chairperson of the Advisory Committee on Cultural Competency (2009-present); Chairperson of the Rules Committee (2017- present); Connecticut Bar Association Young Lawyers Section Diversity Award (2010); Connecticut Bar Association's Henry J. Naruk Judiciary Award for Integrity (2017); NAACP 100 Most Influential Blacks in Connecticut; Connecticut Bar Foundation James W. Cooper Fellows, Life Fellow; Discovering Amistad National Advisory Board; Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities’ Alvin W. Penn Award for Excellence in Leadership (2018); Ebony Magazine Power 100 Award (2018); Quinnipiac School of Law Black Student Association Thurgood Marshall Award (2019); ABOTA Judicial Excellence Award (2019); Connecticut Bar Foundation Distinguished Service Award (2020); National Board of Directors of the Conference of Chief Justices (2019 - present); Conference of Chief Justices Civil Justice Board of Directors (2020 - present); National Judicial Task Force to Examine State Courts’ Response to Mental Illness (2020 - present).

In recognition of these contributions to the jurisprudence and legal profession, the University of Bridgeport will be awarding Justice Robinson an honorary degree of Doctor of Humane Letters.

“Chief Justice Robinson’s experience as an innovator and leader in jurisprudence perfectly exemplifies the integrity and vision that our graduates need in the 21st Century,” says UB’s Interim President, Stephen Healey. “I look forward to honoring him in this way and hearing him speak at this historic ceremony.” 

The Undergraduate Commencement ceremony will be held in person with limited attendance at the new Amphitheater in Bridgeport on Saturday, May 15 at 10:00 AM. Graduates from three colleges: the College of Arts & Sciences, the College of Engineering, Business, and Education, and the College of Health Sciences, will be in attendance.

The University will livestream the ceremonies for those family and friends who are unable to celebrate in person. The link to each livestream will be available on the University of Bridgeport website.