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3) #BlackHistoryMonth Charles Ogletree

Charles Ogletree, the Harvard Law School Jesse Climenko Professor of Law, and Founding, Executive Director of the Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race and Justice.

Professor Charles Ogletree “ Tree” was a groundbreaking legal theorist and attorney who made an international reputation by taking a hard look at complex issues of law and by working to secure the rights guaranteed to all by the Constitution. My interest in doing a documentary on Alzheimer’s was in large measure sparked by a speech Tree gave in Philadelphia in 2016 at the National AME conference where he announced he had Alzheimer's. He said because the disease disproportionately impacted people of color he was committed to using his voice to bring attention to the issue. Seven years after announcing he had Alzheimer's, Ogletree died from complications of the disease at age 70.

— An aside, I first met Charles Ogletree in 1978 on the Supreme Court steps. We were both students- he was at Harvard Law and I was applying to law school. We were waiting in line all night to hear oral arguments in the landmark Bakke case. I remember him telling my best friend Pat and me that as future lawyers we had a responsibility “to make a difference.”


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