Every good mission begins with a great story


Efforts for this rule of law initiative began formally in 2016 but its origin hearkens back to a 2012 middle school field trip. As a sixth-grade student, Sydney Alizabeth Pope visited various Alabama civil rights museums and her father, Derrick Alexander Pope, was one of the parent volunteers. Each museum vividly captured the better-known aspects of the civil rights movement, such as the Montgomery Bus Boycott, Bloody Sunday, and the March on Washington.  Still, there was something missing. The critical and indispensable contribution of lawyers and judges was nowhere to be found.

In 2015, Pope was appointed Co-Chair of the State Bar of Georgia Committee to Promote Inclusion in the Profession. Recalling the cultural and educational opportunity he observed three years earlier, Pope thought the Committee, given its unique mission, could be a suitable group to undertake the effort of bringing into existence an exhibit focused on the contributions of lawyers to the cause of civil rights. After evaluating the feasibility of the idea and meeting with select individuals, he presented the concept to the committee on January 15, 2016, which approved it unanimously. In addition, Pope presented the idea to the State Bar Executive Committee at its April meeting gaining their endorsement. The concept was announced as an initiative at the 2016 State Bar of Georgia Commitment to Equality Awards.

The Committee named the initiative The Arc of Justice Project and established a Content Council to identify the key moments in American jurisprudence that should be reflected in the exhibit. The council immediately set about the task of developing the narrative and overall scope of the exhibit, ultimately deciding to complete the project in two (2) phases with each serving a distinct and strategic purpose. Phase 1 will secure the creation of a traveling exhibit and accompanying public programs. Phase 2 will concentrate on the acquisition of artifacts and other collections which, along with the core exhibits, will become The Arc of Justice Pavilion. In December 2017, the State Bar of Georgia adopted the traveling exhibit as a bar initiative.

The committee later determined that the necessary tasks associated with an initiative of this magnitude exceeded its its capabilities. The Arc of Justice Institute was established in January 2018 to administer, govern, and manage the project and Pope was named President and Managing Director.


The Arc of Justice Institute is guided by three distinct standards to achieve our mission


We believe the rule of law is an indispensable element to a vital democracy. Therefore, we provide initiatives designed to orient the general public on the role of the legal system in protecting rights.


We believe there is a dimension to law that makes its purpose as much sacred as it is secular. Therefore, we actively promote select initiatives that accentuate the law as a healing apparatus.


We believe the legal profession is a rewarding and noble vocation. Therefore, we diligently promote a consciousness of service within the legal business environment. 


The Arc of Justice Institute is led by a dynamic group of professionals


Our chairs were among the first to embrace the vision of The Arc of Justice Project. Their presence has anchored our growth.


A first-class team has been assembled to fulfill our mission. Each has been key to ensuring optimal success.


Our programs flow from the work of our carefully selected partners








Hon. David Adelman

Partner, Reed Smith, Former United States Ambassador to Singapore

Jana J. Edmondson-Cooper

Trial Attorney, United States Department of Labor

Angela N. Frazier

Assistant General Counsel, Cox Communications, Inc.

Hon. Athena Malloy Groves

Judge, Orphans' Court, Prince George's County, Maryland

Andrea Jackson

Grant Writer, Robert W. Woodruff Library, Atlanta University Center

Kirkland A. McGhee

Vice President and Regional Counsel, Kaiser Permanente

Shalamar Parham

Principal, Parham Law Firm, LLC.

Derrick Alexander Pope, J.D.

President and Managing Director, The Arc of Justice Institute

Jami B. Rush

Assistant Solicitor, Office of the Fulton County Solicitor

Hon. Albert R. Wynn

Senior Director, Greenberg Traurig, Former Member United States House of Representatives

Law School representatives

Cathy CoxDean and Professor of Law, Mercer University School of Law

Russell Gabriel, Clinical Professor and Criminal Defense Practicum Director, University of Georgia School of Law

Oren GriffinAssociate Dean for Strategic Initiatives and Professor of Law, Mercer University School of Law

Darcy McLean Meals.Assistant Director, Center for Access to Justice, Georgia State University College of Law

Gregory Roseboro, Executive Director of Admissions & Diversity Programs, University of Georgia School of Law

Rita Sheffey, J.D., Ph.D., Assistant Dean for Public Service, Emory University School of Law

Tanya WashingtonProfessor of Law, Georgia State University College of Law


Legal Organizations

Morgan ClemonsState Bar of Georgia Young Lawyers Division (Aldridge Pite LLP)

Katie Dod, State Bar of Georgia Committee to Promote Inclusion in the Profession (Staff Attorney, Georgia Court of Appeals)

Kristin L. HallAttorney, Law Office of Karen St. Amand (Arc of Justice Board designee)

Titus NicholsState Bar of Georgia Committee to Promote Inclusion in the Profession (Bell & Brigham)

Jami B. RushGeorgia Association of Black Women Attorneys (Supervising Attorney, Georgia Legal Services)

Brenda WodardState Bar of Georgia Committee to Promote Inclusion in the Profession (Georgia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities)


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