Discover Black Heritage: Harrison County Court Judge Robin Midcalf
Through our Discover Black Heritage stories, each Thursday News 25’s Janae Jordan will introduce an African American making a difference in our community.
On this week’s Discover Black Heritage, News 25’s Janae Jordan will introduce you to Judge Robin Midcalf, a leader who is making her mark and changing stereotypes in the courtroom.
“I don’t think growing up I even thought that I could become a judge.” Judge Robin Midcalf says growing up she never saw many women of color in high power positions besides the women on TV, but in the ninth grade, her interest in becoming a lawyer sparked. “I was the one who would speak up in class. So, it was appealing to me. I only saw lawyers on TV, the professionals that I saw during that time, early 70s, the only professional, especially blacks, that I saw they were teachers.”
Once Midcalf set sights on becoming a lawyer, she found out she was pregnant her senior year of high school. “My daughter actually inspired me to continue this journey. I had this little life that didn’t ask to come here, but I felt immediately that I had to be accountable to her.”
Midcalf graduated with her associates degree from Jeff Davis Junior College, received her bachelor’s degree from William Carey University in business administration, and then went on to law school at the University of Mississippi where she passed the bar on her first try. “I am going into my seventh term. I have been on the bench for 24 years.”
Midcalf says in the beginning she felt very unwelcomed by many of her peers, but says she wasn’t going to allow anyone to dim her light. “I certainly went through some challenges, but I have a saying: life is hard and we have to pick our hard.’”
Always taking the high road, Midcalf decided early on she was going to occupy spaces even if it made others uncomfortable. “I move through the space very cautiously, very humbly, yet I’m moving because I am here.”
Now going into her seventh term as a Harrison County Court judge, Midcalf’s goal is to mentor, inspire, and continue to encourage the next generation. “I certainly want to be an example to, especially you know, black and brown children who are looking at me and thinking I wanna be a lawyer. If Judge Midcalf made it, so can I and certainly you can.”