Civil Rights Leader, Former Judge Russell Sugarmon Dies at 89 - Articles

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Posted by: Katharine Heriges on Feb 19, 2019
Russell Sugarmon Jr., a former judge, legislator and civil rights leader, died yesterday at age 89, the Commercial Appeal reports. Sugarmon, a Memphis native, was appointed to the General Sessions bench in May 1987, and re-elected until his retirement in 2006. He also served in the Tennessee House of Representatives as a Democrat from 1967 to 1979. Sugarmon was the first African-American to make a serious bid for a major city office when he ran for public works commissioner in 1959. Although he didn’t win that campaign, it paved the way for future minority leaders. He was a Harvard Law graduate and served for two years in the U.S. military. Funeral arrangements will be posted when available.