Judge to speak at African American History Breakfast

Published 12:00 am Sunday, February 22, 2015

Senior U.S. District Court Judge Donald L. Graham of Florida, a native son of Salisbury, will be the featured speaker at the 22nd Annual African-American History Breakfast at Rufty-Holmes Senior Center on Friday, Feb. 27.

President George H.W. Bush nominated Graham to the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida on June 17, 1991. Confirmed by the Senate on Sept. 12, 1991, he received commission on Sept. 16, 1991. He took senior status on Dec. 15, 2013 after 22 years on the bench.

Graham was born in 1948 in Salisbury, the only child of the late E.J. & Mildred Graham. His uncle, Raeford Graham, served as Salisbury’s first African-American police officer. He graduated from the last class to attend J.C. Price High School.

He graduated magna cum laude from West Virginia State College in 1971 with a bachelor of arts degree. While there he served as president of the Student Body Association. He obtained his J.D. in 1974 from Ohio State University College of Law, where he was recognized with the Best Oralist Award and as the Outstanding Trial Practice Student.

Graham was an adjunct instructor at the University of Maryland University College (UMUC) from 1975 to 1977. He served in the U.S. Army Judge Advocate General’s Corps from 1974-1979, holding the rank of captain, and in the Army Reserve JAG Corps from 1983-1991. He retired from the Reserves as a lieutenant colonel.

Graham served as an assistant U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Florida from 1979 to 1984, and was in private practice in Miami from 1984 to 1991, before being appointed to the court.

The breakfast begins at 8:30 a.m. at the center located on South Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue in Salisbury. Admission is $7 at the door with reservations. Call the center at 704-216-7714 to make a reservation.