<h4><span class="tx">Stanford Law School'<\/span><span class="tx">s Class of 1952 is the only one in history to have produced\u00a0<\/span><span class="tx">two U.S. Supreme Court justices<\/span><\/h4>\r\nThe years after World War II brought change to Stanford. Returning veterans on the\u00a0GI Bill packed the campus. They\u00a0and their classmates pursued their Stanford\u00a0opportunity with the drive that would later mark them as the Greatest Generation.\r\n\r\nFormer Chief Justice William Rehnquist,\u00a0'48 MA\u00a0'48 LLB\u00a0'52, himself an Army Air\u00a0Corps veteran, and former Justice Sandra Day O'Connor,\u00a0'50, LLB\u00a0'52, are the only\u00a0Supreme Court justices in U.S. history to come from the same law school class.\r\n\r\nBoth were brilliant and hard-working, said fellow students contacted for\u00a0<a href="http:\/\/law.stanford.edu\/wp-content\/uploads\/sites\/default\/files\/child-page\/292312\/doc\/slspublic\/by_Lempert_'After_Five_Decades_SLS_Class_of_1952'_from_27_Legal_Stud._F._265_2003.pdf" target="_blank">a class\u00a0history<\/a>\u00a0in the 1980s. Moreover, the Class of 1952 began law careers at an ideal\u00a0place and time. The 1950s and 1960s saw tremendous growth, especially in\u00a0California,\u00a0and the state's economic and political fortunes soared.\u00a0For two\u00a0Californian U.S. presidents, wrote David Lempert, JD\/MBA\u00a0'83, the author of that\u00a0history, "Stanford Law School and the West were logical places to search for\u00a0Supreme Court nominees."\r\n\r\nAmong\u00a0Stanford's\u00a0law\u00a0students in the postwar years\u00a0were Shirley Hufstedler,\u00a0LLB\u00a0'49,\u00a0who became the first U.S.\u00a0secretary of\u00a0education; future\u00a0senator\u00a0Frank Church,\u00a0'47 JD\u00a0'50; John Ehrlichman,\u00a0JD\u00a0'51,\u00a0later adviser to President Richard Nixon;\u00a0William Baxter,\u00a0'51 JD\u00a0'56,\u00a0President Ronald Reagan's antitrust chief in the\u00a0Department of Justice; future Rep. Pete McCloskey,\u00a0'50 JD\u00a0'53,\u00a0who co-authored the\u00a0Endangered Species Act; and Warren Christopher,\u00a0JD\u00a0'49,\u00a0who became President Bill\u00a0Clinton's\u00a0secretary of\u00a0state.\r\n\r\nIronically, said the Class of 1952 alums, the legal education they received at Stanford\u00a0was not yet geared toward jurisprudence, social or political issues, or ethics. Rather,\u00a0it trained them for practice. The horizons of Stanford legal education had just begun\u00a0to rise with the advent in 1946 of law school Dean Carl Spaeth, a former diplomat\u00a0<a href="http:\/\/law.stanford.edu\/wp-content\/uploads\/sites\/default\/files\/child-page\/292312\/doc\/slspublic\/by_Bromberg_'Legal_Legacies_A_Brief_History_of_SLS'_from_Stanford_magazine_1993-SEPT-VOL21-NO3.pdf" target="_blank">whose many\u00a0institutional enhancements\u00a0included<\/a>\u00a0the founding of the\u00a0<em>Stanford Law\u00a0Review<\/em>\u00a0two years later. Both O'Connor \u2013 then Sandra Day \u2013 and Rehnquist served on\u00a0the\u00a0<em>Review<\/em>.\r\n\r\nThey studied, thanks to Spaeth, in a newly refurbished building\u00a0opened in July 1950\u00a0on the Quad whose stained-glass windows and marble trim\u00a0were\u00a0replaced with\u00a0fluorescent lighting and linoleum.\u00a0The curriculum was traditional and rigorous.\u00a0Rehnquist\u00a0<a href="https:\/\/www-cdn.law.stanford.edu\/wp-content\/uploads\/2015\/07\/sl72_articles.pdf" target="_blank">told\u00a0<em>Stanford Lawyer<\/em>\u00a0in 2005<\/a>\u00a0that "that first year generally just enlarged\u00a0my mind."\r\n\r\n"To the extent I ever had an intellectual awakening\u00a0\u2013\u00a0and there may be some people\u00a0who doubt the underlying premise\u00a0\u2013\u00a0it was that first year of law school," he\u00a0<a href="https:\/\/stanfordlawyer.law.stanford.edu\/issues\/archive\/Stanford_Lawyer_issue-13_1973-SUMMER-VOL8-NO2_front.pdf" target="_blank">told law\u00a0students and alumni in 1973<\/a>,\u00a0a year after joining the high court.\r\n\r\nRehnquist entered Stanford as a transfer undergraduate in 1946 after war service\u00a0in\u00a0North Africa\u00a0as a weather forecaster. He'd learned he liked warm weather, and\u00a0Ohio's Kenyon College didn't fill the bill. Receiving\u00a0Stanford aid\u00a0as well as\u00a0GI Bill\u00a0funding, Rehnquist worked his way through via\u00a0several jobs, including running the\u00a0coffee\u00a0stand\u00a0in the law-student lounge and\u00a0living as\u00a0a resident assistant at nearby\u00a0Menlo College for his room and board.\r\n\r\nHis classmate\u00a0Allan Fink '49 LLB '52, had been command pilot of a B-24 Liberator\u00a0with a dozen missions in Asia. As\u00a0<a href="https:\/\/law.stanford.edu\/stanford-lawyer\/articles\/6006-2\/" target="_blank"><em>Stanford Lawyer<\/em>\u00a0remembered in 2013<\/a>, Fink found\u00a0the stress of law practice "nothing compared to being shot at."\r\n\r\n"We were very much in awe of the fact that we were freshmen in law school," Rehnquist\u00a0said.\u00a0"A lot of us certainly weren't young \u2026 We had been in the service in\u00a0the Second World War, but this didn't lessen our awe at the prospect of entering law\u00a0school."\r\n\r\nHe singled out for praise Professor John Hurlbut, who taught criminal law the first\u00a0year and evidence in the third. While Rehnquist knew hard work and high\u00a0standards, his third-year stint as Hurlbut's assistant on an evidence text raised the\u00a0bar.\r\n\r\nIn 1981, around the time of O'Connor's nomination to the court, news sources\u00a0reported that Rehnquist was No. 1 and O'Connor No. 3 in the historic class's academic rankings. Several classmates claimed the No. 2 spot. According to the law\u00a0school's\u00a0<em>60+\u00a0Moments in the History of Stanford Law School<\/em>, "Despite many searches\u00a0by many parties, no official records have been found, so the mystery lives on."\r\n\r\nWhat's certain is that\u00a0both belonged to the Order of the Coif, comprised of\u00a0each\u00a0class's\u00a0top 10\u00a0percent. Studying through the summers, Rehnquist graduated early in\u00a0December 1951, but is still considered part of the 1952 class.\r\n\r\nDespite competing for top marks, the two were friendly and went on picnics\u00a0together.\r\n\r\n"We dated some in the second year, and then we kind of went different ways,"\u00a0Rehnquist\u00a0<a href="https:\/\/www-cdn.law.stanford.edu\/wp-content\/uploads\/2015\/07\/sl72_articles.pdf" target="_blank">told\u00a0<em>Stanford Lawyer<\/em>\u00a0in 2005<\/a>.\r\n\r\nO'Connor, who described herself in her 2004\u00a0Stanford University Commencement\u00a0address as\u00a0"a cowgirl from eastern Arizona,"\u00a0boarded with Helen Cubberley, '00, widow\u00a0of the School of Education's Ellwood Cubberley. She accelerated her studies under a\u00a0program that then allowed Stanford students to complete a BA and a law degree in\u00a0six years.\r\n\r\nLater, O'Connor <a href="https:\/\/alumni.stanford.edu\/get\/page\/magazine\/article\/?article_id=33331" target="_blank">recalled the enormous influence<\/a> imparted\u00a0to\u00a0her life by business-law Professor Harry Rathbun,\u00a0'16 Engr.\u00a0'20 JD\u00a0'29,\u00a0who is today commemorated in\u00a0the Stanford series\u00a0"Harry's Last Lecture,"\u00a0and whose private teachings\u00a0encompassed ethics, spirituality and the necessity of asking oneself\u00a0"Who are we?\u00a0Where are we going?\u201d\r\n\r\n"[Rathbun] was the first person ever to speak in my presence of how an individual\u00a0could make a difference; how a single caring person can effectively help determine\u00a0the course of events,"\u00a0O'Connor said in May 2003.\u00a0"I had not heard that before, really, and he put it forward in such a persuasive way\u00a0that I think most of us came to believe it might be true, and to take seriously the\u00a0notion that we could make a difference."\r\n\r\nAfter graduating as a star of the Class of 1952,\u00a0however,\u00a0O'Connor famously was\u00a0unable to find any job in a private law firm except as a legal secretary.\r\n\r\n"But the gender walls that blocked me out of the private sector were more easily\u00a0hurdled in the public sector, " she <a href="http:\/\/news.stanford.edu\/news\/2004\/june16\/oconnor-text-616.html" target="_blank">said in\u00a0her 2004 Commencement address<\/a>, "and I\u00a0first found employment as a deputy county attorney of San Mateo County.\r\n\r\n"While I was brought to the position by something short of choice, I came to realize\u00a0almost immediately what a wonderful path I had taken. \u2026 Life as a public servant\u00a0was more interesting. The work was more challenging. The encouragement and\u00a0guidance from good mentors was more genuine. And the opportunities to take\u00a0initiative and to see real results were more frequent."\r\n\r\nShe became an assistant attorney general and an Arizona state senator and judge en\u00a0route to the high court.\u00a0"At every step of the way," she said, "I felt the thrill of doing something right for a\u00a0reason that was good."\r\n\r\nAppointed by Nixon, Rehnquist joined the high court in 1972 and became chief\u00a0justice in 1986. He remained in that role until his death in 2005. When Reagan was\u00a0searching for a Supreme Court appointee in 1981,\u00a0<a href="https:\/\/alumni.stanford.edu\/get\/page\/magazine\/article\/?article_id=33966" target="_blank"><em>Stanford Magazine<\/em>\u00a0later reported<\/a>,\u00a0Rehnquist "gave O'Connor, then an appellate judge in Arizona, his back-channel\u00a0endorsement."\r\n\r\nThe justices returned frequently to Stanford together, for example to preside over a\u00a01997 moot-court dramatization that marked the establishment of the Judge John\u00a0Crown Professorship in Law.\r\n\r\nThe Class of 1952 stayed loyal to Stanford as well. In 2002, 70 percent of the class\u00a0attended its 50th reunion,\u00a0<a href="https:\/\/law.stanford.edu\/i-am-an-alum\/reunions\/" target="_blank">setting an attendance record<\/a>.