The Namesakes Of The Inn

Judge Harry A. Cole: 

Judge Cole was born in Washington D.C. on January 1, 1921. He attended Baltimore City Public Schools before graduating from Morgan State College in 1943. After college, Judge Cole served as a 1st Lieutenant in the United States Army. 

He began his legal career with the Baltimore division of the NAACP after graduating from the University of Maryland School of Law in 1949. In the "first" of many "firsts," Judge Cole became the first African American assistant attorney general in the State of Maryland. He served in this role until he was elected to serve as the first African American Maryland State Senator in 1954. 

In 1967, Judge Cole was appointed to the Municipal Court Court of Baltimore City and, later the same year, was appointed to the Supreme Bench of Baltimore City (now known at the Circuit Court). In 1977, Judge Cole again made history when he was the first African American appointed to the Court of Appeals. He served on the Court of Appeals until 1991. 

Source: Maryland State Archives

Judge Rita C. Davidson

Judge Rita C. Davison was born in Brooklyn, New York, in 1928. She earned her undergraduate degree from Goucher College in 1948 and was one of less than a dozen women to graduate from Yale Law School in 1951.

After beginning her legal career with a law firm in Washington, D.C., Judge Davidson started her own practice in Rockville, Maryland, in 1963. From 1960-1964, she served as the vice-chair and chair of the Montgomery County Board of Appeals. And, in 1967 she served on the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission. In 1970, Judge Davidson became the first woman to serve in the Maryland Cabinet after Governor Mandel selected her as his Secretary of the Maryland Department of Employment and Social Services.

In another "first," Judge Davidson was the first women appointed to the Maryland Court of Special Appeals in 1972. She served on this court until 1979, when acting Governor Lee appointed her as the first women to serve on the Maryland Court of Appeals. She served on the Maryland Court of Appeals until 1984.



Source: Maryland State Archives