fb-pixel Skip to main content

‘This is everything’: Photo of Ketanji Brown Jackson’s daughter smiling at her mother resonates with many

The family of Supreme Court nominee Ketanji Brown Jackson listened during her confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Monday. From left, husband Patrick Jackson, daughter Leila Jackson, and daughter Talia Jackson.Evan Vucci/Associated Press

A photo of Supreme Court nominee Ketanji Brown Jackson’s daughter proudly smiling at her mother during this week’s historic confirmation hearings has gone viral, in a moment that appeared to resonate with parents and family members of other barrier-breaking women of color.

In the photo, taken and shared on Twitter by Sarahbeth Maney, a photographer for The New York Times, Jackson’s daughter Leila is seated next to Jackson’s husband, Dr. Patrick Jackson, on the first day of confirmation hearings on Monday. Leila, sitting in the row directly behind Jackson, directs a subtle smile at her as she faces Senate Judiciary Committee members. Jackson’s other daughter, Talia, was also present.


On Monday, the first day of confirmation proceedings, senators on the committee and Jackson began with opening statements before the questioning portions of the hearings spanned the next two days.

In her opening statement, Jackson said she was saving a “special moment” for Talia and Leila.

“Girls, I know it has not been easy as I have tried to navigate the challenges of juggling my career and motherhood,” Jackson said. “And I fully admit that I did not always get the balance right. But I hope that you have seen that with hard work, determination, and love, it can be done.”

The photo of Leila from Monday appeared to particularly resonate with mothers and women of color across the country, with many taking to Twitter to highlight it.

Florida Representative Val Demings shared the photo on Twitter, writing, “Yes, our daughters are watching and they are proud.”

Maya Harris, the sister of Kamala Harris, the first woman and woman of color to be elected vice president in the United States, wrote “This is everything” alongside the photo.

Bernice King, the daughter of Martin Luther King Jr. and Coretta Scott King, said the photo was “powerful” and “needed.”


If she is confirmed, Jackson would become the first Black woman to serve as a Supreme Court justice.

Amanda Kaufman can be reached at amanda.kaufman@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @amandakauf1.