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Bruce Jacob presented with traditional Supreme Court white quill


Dean Emeritus and Professor of Law Bruce Jacob was presented with a traditional Supreme Court white quill at the  Bruce R. Jacob Criminal Appellate American Inn of Court meeting on April 22 in Tampa. Florida assistant attorneys general Robert Krauss and Diana Bock presented the quill to Jacob to commemorate his work in arguing cases before the U.S. Supreme Court.

Bruce Jacob received Supreme Court quill from  Florida Assistant Attorney General Robert Krauss.

Bruce Jacob received a Supreme Court quill from Florida Assistant Attorney General Robert Krauss.

Jacob twice presented before the Court. As a young law graduate working in Tallahassee 50 years ago, Jacob was assigned to represent the respondent as an assistant attorney general of Florida in the landmark 1963 case Gideon v. Wainwright. The Court’s decision was the impetus for the establishment of public defender offices throughout the U.S.

In 1969, Jacob was appointed by the Supreme Court to handle a federal prisoner’s case before the Court and he won the case for the petitioner in Kaufman v. United States.

A white quill is traditionally placed on the counsel table at the U.S. Supreme Court for attorneys presenting before the Court. The attorneys are permitted to take the quill home after the argument.

Jacob never brought a white quill home from the Supreme Court.

“Either I didn’t realize that I was allowed to take one, or I was so nervous I forgot,” Jacob said.