On This Day: July 25, 1918

A woman of firsts, Annette Abbott Adams is appointed as the first female U.S. District Attorney.


On July 25, 1918, Annette Abbott Adams became the first woman to be appointed to the position of United States District Attorney. Born in 1877 in Prattville, California – Annette Abbott Adams was a trailblazing jurist who conquered many firsts: 

  • One of the first female school principals in California;
  • One of the first two women to receive a law degree from the University of California; 
  • One of the first women to be admitted to the California Bar; 
  • The first woman to serve as a U.S. Attorney; 
  • The first woman appointed Assistant U.S. Attorney General; 
  • The first woman to serve as an appellate court justice in California. 


In 1910, Adams pursued her J.D. from Boalt Hall at UC Berkeley. During that time, the suffrage amendment was passed, giving Adams the right to not only vote but to practice law. 

Learn more about the life and law career of Annette Abbott Adams.

Site Map | Careers | Contact Us | Accessibility | Public Access to Records | Terms of Use | Privacy