A Stockton native has defied all odds and made history, becoming the first in his family to graduate not only from college but also from Harvard Law School.
Harold Grigsby, a former intern at Stockton City Hall, grew up in public housing, facing adversities such as the loss of friends to gun violence and a stint in juvenile hall. Despite these challenges, Grigsby transformed his life through education.
"After a short amount of time incarcerated at a juvenile facility, I really got back on track and started taking school very seriously," said Grigsby. He later attended community college before graduating from the University of California, Los Angeles.
The idea of law school was initially a distant concept to Grigsby. "I didn't think law school was realistic. I didn't know any lawyers, or any who looked like me or come from where I come from," he said. However, towards the end of his UCLA career, Grigsby began to envision law school as a possibility.
He hopes to leverage his law degree to bring positive change to his hometown of Stockton, driven by his observations of social inequalities and food deserts. His time working with former Mayor Michael Tubbs further solidified his interest in policy and law.
On Grigsby's graduation day from Harvard Law School, Tubbs reached out to congratulate him. "I am so proud of Harold Grigsby! To whom much is given, much is required, and you have a unique voice. We need it, and we are listening!" Tubbs said.
However, Grigsby stressed that his achievements were not reached in isolation. "People can't do these things alone, and it's very hard coming from places where I come from to get to places like this without this type of investment and help," Grigsby said.
With plans to move to Washington, D.C., to further his legal career, Grigsby's ultimate goal is to bring his knowledge and expertise back home to Stockton. His journey stands as a testament to the power of perseverance and the impact of community support.
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