Illinois Pioneers

Illinois Pioneers Season Premiere: Justice Rita Garman

7:30 pm Thursday, Sept. 4, on WILL-TV
Justice Rita Garman

Justice Rita Garman

When she was in law school, some professors told Rita Garman she didn’t belong there because she was a woman. After graduation, law firms said they couldn’t hire her because clients didn’t want a woman lawyer. But Garman found work as a legal-aid attorney and went on to work at every level of the state’s court system. Today, she serves as Chief Justice of the Illinois Supreme Court. She is David Inge’s first guest on the new season of Illinois Pioneers.

“We talk about how one learns to be a judge, and about what the job really involves,” David said. “We also talk about cameras in the courtroom, which she supports, and about the debate over whether judges should be elected or appointed.”

Other guests this month include Shozo Sato on Sept. 11, and Rainer Martens on Sept. 25. The program won’t air on Sept. 18 because of Ken Burns’ The Roosevelts.

Sato is internationally known as a theater director for his adaptations of Japanese Kabuki plays for western audiences, and the author of books on Japanese brush painting, flower arranging and the tea ceremony.  He first came to Urbana-Champaign in 1964 as an artist-in-residence, and became a professor of art and design at the University of Illinois. He also created the original Japan House, a center for Japanese culture on the U of I campus.

Martens, an internationally recognized sports psychologist, founded Champaign-based Human Kinetics, the world’s largest publisher of books, journals, videos and software in the sports and fitness field.  Known for creating the American Sport Education Program, the largest coaching education program in the U.S., he is also the author of “Successful Coaching,” the top- selling coaching book of all time.

Other guests this season will include U of I professor emeritus and anti-trans fat scientist Fred Kummerow; Busey Bank vice chairman Ed Scharlau; music producer Mark Rubel; and U of I entomologist May Berenbaum.

Watch the full episode: