Syposium On Creating Access

In 2008, in association with Temple University and the Philadelphia Bar Association, PDLG presented a symposium on the Norris Law Firm and the Liacouras Committee at the African American History Museum.

The firm of Norris, Schmidt Green Harris Higginbotham & Brown is widely seen as the first African- American law firm in Philadelphia. Among its many accomplishments, it led efforts and partnered with others to increase the number of African-American lawyers in Philadelphia by advocating for the reform of the Pennsylvania Bar examination process.

In response, the Philadelphia Bar Association sponsored a special committee chaired by Peter Liacouras, the former President of Temple University and Dean of its law school. After implementation of requeste changes, the number of African-American lawyers admitted to the Pennsylvania Bar increased dramatically.

At the symposium, the history of these events was told through the recollections of a panel of witnesses to and participants in these historic events.