Law Star Judy Sheindlin, aka Judge Judy, as granted her alma mater, New York Law School, a $5 million scholarship for female law student.
Sheindlin, one of television’s wealthiest stars after 25 years on her famed show, as well as books, television production and law, with a personal wealth estimated at around $440 million.
The Judy Sheindlin Honors Scholars Program will begin at New York Law School this fall and will support 10 female law students each year with recipients receiving full scholarships to the school, which presently lists its JD tuition fees at almost $58,000.
Recipients of the scholarships will also have assistance to buy books and to complete a summer fellowship after their first year at law school.
Sheindlin graduated from New York Law School in 1965 and subsequently was appointed as a family court judge before beginning her television career. Her daughter, Nicole Sheindlin, is also an alumna, and her granddaughter, Sarah Rose, is due to graduate in May.
The Judge Judy Money Machine
Judge Judy has become a global law staple on television. Sheindiln has become the highest paid woman on American television, earning in an estimated $47 million annually, yet in a show that required just 52 days a year of ‘work’ in her televised small claims court.
She now operates ‘Justice Judy’ a supposedly more elaborate version of what ‘Judge Judy’ was, although it can be somewhat difficult to tell the difference. She wears a burgundy robe (not the lace collar and black) but the format is the same with the airing of small-time disputes before a tetchy Judge.
Her fame and money have made her new scholarship one that has itself received considerable attention and her own background prior to her fame were significant too.
She was the only woman in her graduating class at New York Law School, New York City, when she earned a J.D. in 1965 and she passed the bar exam the same year. At that time she was married and began in private practice but left to help raise her two children. She divorced and remarried Gerald Sheindlin, also a lawyer (who later became a New York State Supreme Court judge.
The Rise & Rise of Judge Judy
The ‘Judge Judy’ industry began with her outspoken approach to her work, which became something that famed New York mayor Ed Koch liked and in 1982 she was appointed to the family court in the Bronx where she faced down a very large caseload with dispatch and efficiency.
Her blunt manner also caught the eye of the 60 Minutes TV newsmagazine and as her national profile increased she published her first book Don’t Pee on My Leg and Tell Me It’s Raining: America’s Toughest Family Court Judge Speaks Out (with Josh Getlin), in 1996. Her increasing prominence persuaded TV executives to propose a courtroom show similar to The People’s Court (1981–93), with Sheindlin as the arbiter of small-claims cases, and Judge Judy was born.