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Bessie Seely


First woman to graduate from the Law College of Syracuse University, Class of 1903, the same year as the Law College’s first African American graduate. To this day the College of Law honors these groundbreaking graduates each year by giving the Seeley Johnson Award to a graduate who embodies the highest ideals of professionalism, integrity, diversity, and leadership. Seeley was also the first woman to be accepted to the NYS Bar Association. She donated her father’s old home shop to the Walworth Chamber of Commerce, and was on hand to cut the ribbon when the Walworth-Seeley Library opened in 1962.

Bessie Seely
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