Law Day


WHEREAS, Charles S. Rhyne, President of the American Bar Association and legal counsel to President Dwight D Eisenhower, proposed in 1958 that May 1 be designated Law Day to cast “spotlight upon the rule of law in America, expressing to the people of the world our admiration and respect for the rule of law as the key to individual freedom and justice”; and

WHEREAS, in that same year, President Eisenhower proclaimed May 1, 1958 as the first Law Day because, “it is fitting that the people of this Nation should remember with pride and vigilantly guard the great heritage of liberty, justice, and equality under law which our forefathers bequeathed to us;” and

WHEREAS, on April 7, 1961, the Congress of the United States by joint resolution proclaimed May 1 as Law Day: a day of celebration by the people of the United States “in appreciation of their liberties and the reaffirmation of their loyalty to the United States and of their rededication to the ideals of equality and justice under law in their relations with each other and with other countries;” and

WHEREAS, President John F. Kennedy recognized by proclamation “law is the strongest link between man and freedom, and by strengthening the rule of law we strengthen freedom and justice in our own country and contribute by example to the goal of justice under law for all mankind;” and

WHEREAS, this year’s theme is “Magna Carta: Symbol of Freedom Under Law” celebrating the 800th anniversary of the sealing of the Charter; and

WHEREAS, Law Day is intended to spur American’s to acknowledge and further the principles of equality and justice under the law; and

WHEREAS, since 1958, each President of the United States and a preponderance of governors has declared May 1 as Law Day; and

WHEREAS, the General Assembly designated May 1 as Law Day in Virginia in 2009;

NOW, THEREFORE, I, Terence R. McAuliffe, do hereby recognize May 1, 2015, as LAW DAY in our COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA, and I call this observance to the attention of all our citizens.