WBA celebrates Black History Month by celebrating the Black members of our community.
Marcia McCree is a Brooklyn native who graduated from George Washington University College of Law. She began her legal career representing plaintiff’s side anti-trust and consumer protection class action suits. She then pivoted to real property and real property taxation and zoning issues, serving as a Special Assistant Attorney General with the Commercial Finance Bureau of the District of Columbia and subsequently small firm private practice until 2020. In 2020, she joined the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Real Property Law Group.
Marcia is a co-chair for the WBA’s Golf Committee. She earned her J.D. at the George Washington University Law School and a B.A. in Political Science and B.S. in Economics from the University of Georgia. Marcia is an avid gardener and University of Georgia football fan.
What inspired you to join the WBA?
Community. I have met so many wonderful women through my time with the WBA and we continue to strive for equity.
How did your community growing up shape who you are now?
I grew up in both an Afro-Caribbean and immigrant community in Brooklyn. It was a diverse and amazing experience that taught me to be quick to listen, slow to speak.
What motivated you to enroll in law school?
Idealism, coupled with naivety! Before law school, as a political science major, we are taught that seminal cases such as Brown, Casey, Loving, and Plessy all change our society (for better or worse). One of the first things I learned in law school was the concept of stare decisis and the fact that the law is slow to change.
What advice would you give to a Black law student who aspires to be where you are now?
Find mentorship as quickly as possible. Law school can teach you theory and possibly the ability to “think like a lawyer.” However, law school cannot prepare you for practice and the politics of being in spaces traditionally reserved for the privileged. A great mentor can help you navigate tricky waters.
What does Black History Month mean to you personally, and why is it important to celebrate it?
Representation and resilience. Growing up, Black History Month was the main conduit to learn about the achievements of Black Americans. It was inspirational to know that Black Americans often started rich cultural traditions and fought de jure and de facto racism to achieve so much.
What progress or positive changes have you witnessed for the Black legal community in recent years?
Honest conversations. It is a tough profession, and it is even more tough for a woman of color. Discussing the institution itself and the many ways it was not designed for us has allowed more of us to be successful. The more honest the conversation, the less internalization.
What are your hopes or aspirations for the future of the Black legal community?
Innovation. Although the legal community at large is a conservative institution, it can still be used to address some of the systemic and institutional issues in our society. I think the Black legal community has been at the forefront of innovative strategies to move our society forward and can keep that same energy.