Almost 84 years after the lynching of her great-grandfather, Kyra Harris Bolden made history as the first Black woman and the youngest sworn in to serve on the Michigan Supreme Court, reports CNN.

The brutal injustice that her grandfather suffered became the impetus for her political aspirations. “I like to say that I will be a justice for generations just [because of] my family history of injustice,” she said.

In 1939, Jesse Lee Bond was lynched in broad daylight in Arlington, Tennesee when he was just 20 years old. According to reports, the white owner of the SY Wilson feed store was angered that Bond asked for a receipt for the supplies he purchased. In response, several white men shot Bond, then “took him, dragged him, castrated him, and stuck him out in the Hatchie river,” his nephew Ronald Morris told ABC. The two men who were tried for Bond’s murder were eventually acquitted by an all-white jury. 

“We know who did it,” Morris said. “They knew who did it. The sheriff knew who did it. Everybody knew who did it. They covered it up.”

Reflecting on her journey, Bolden noted that her family went “from lynching to law school, from injustice to Justice,” but her achievement is not enough to address the long history of racial violence and inequality in America.

“We still have to work hard to try to break down these barriers,” she explained, noting that has yet to be a Black woman governor in the U.S.

In honor of Bond's memory, the Lynching Sites Project of Memphis partnered with his family to place a historical marker at the place of his death. The organization also honored Bond with a soil collection ceremony and the remnants will be on display at The Legacy Museum in Montgomery.

Along with her family history, Bolden comes well-equipped for her new position. Before being appointed to the Michigan Supreme Court, she served as a Democratic member of the Michigan House of Representatives for the 35th district. Also, she received her bachelor's degree from Grand Valley State University and her Juris Doctor from the University of Detroit Mercy School of Law.

Governor Gretchen Whitmer, who appointed Bolden to succeed retiring Justice Bridget Mary McCormack back in November, gave the 34-year-old former a glowing endorsement

“She will bring a unique perspective to our high court as a Black woman—and as a new, working mom—that has too long been left out,” the governor said in a statement. “Kyra is committed to fighting for justice for generations, and I know she will serve Michigan admirably, building a brighter future for her newborn daughter and all our kids.”

Bolden’s vision is to seek justice and equality for the citizens of Michigan as Supreme Court Justice.

“I like to say that I will be a justice for generations just [because of] my family history of injustice,” she said. “That's why it's so important for me to protect justice for the future of my child and for all the children of Michigan because the decisions that the Michigan Supreme Court makes, and will make in the future, will absolutely determine the type of Michigan that our children and our children's children live in.”