Garrity, Arthur, Jr.

Garrity, (Wendell) Arthur, Jr.

(1920–  ) judge; born in Worcester, Mass. The son of a lawyer, he graduated from Holy Cross (1941) and, after serving with the U.S. Army in World War II, from Harvard Law School (1946). He served as a government lawyer (1948–50), and went into private practice in Boston (1950–61); active in Democratic politics, he worked on John F. Kennedy's successful 1958 senate campaign. He became U.S. attorney for Massachusetts (1961–66) and was appointed to the federal bench for Massachusetts in 1966. In 1974 he came to national prominence when he ruled that Boston's school officials had deliberately maintained a segregated school system, and he placed the entire system under federal control. During the next 13 years he handed down some 400 orders that had major impact on the conduct of the schools—particularly in the matter of bussing. In 1987 an Appeal's Court ruled that the Boston system no longer needed to be supervised by a federal judge, but Garrity continued to hand down specific rulings as late as 1990.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.