Photograph of Justice Stevens

“Although they make enormous contributions to our society, corporations are not actually members of it. They cannot vote or run for office…[t]he financial resources, legal structure, and instrumental orientation of corporations raise legitimate concerns about their role in the electoral process. Our lawmakers have a compelling constitutional basis, if not also a democratic duty, to take measures designed to guard against the potentially deleterious effects of corporate spending in local and national races.”

- U.S. Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens, dissenting in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission

The Honorable Justice John Paul Stevens

John Paul Stevens (Retired), Associate Justice, was born in Chicago, Illinois, on April 20, 1920. He married Maryan Mulholland and has four children — John Joseph (deceased), Kathryn, Elizabeth Jane, and Susan Roberta. He received an A.B. from the University of Chicago and a J.D. from Northwestern University School of Law.

He served in the United States Navy from 1942–1945 and was a law clerk to Justice Wiley Rutledge of the Supreme Court of the United States during the 1947 Term. He was admitted to law practice in Illinois in 1949. He was Associate Counsel to the Subcommittee on the Study of Monopoly Power of the Judiciary Committee of the U.S. House of Representatives, 1951–1952, and a member of the Attorney General’s National Committee to Study Antitrust Law, 1953–1955.

He was Second Vice President of the Chicago Bar Association in 1970. From 1970–1975, he served as a Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit. President Gerald Ford nominated him as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court, and he took his seat December 19, 1975. Justice Stevens retired from the Supreme Court on June 29, 2010.

Public Citizen will present a Lifetime Achievement Award to U.S. Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens in recognition of his many years of distinguished service, his principled decision-making, and his powerful dissent in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission.

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