Judith Sheindlin, better known as Judge Judy, is an American lawyer, judge, television personality and author. She passed the New York bar exam in 1965 and became a prosecutor in the family court system. In 1976, Mayor Ed Koch appointed her a judge, first in criminal court and later, in 1980, as Manhattan's supervising family court judge. She was featured on CBS's 60 Minutes in the 1990s as a result of her reputation as a tough judge.
Since retiring in 1996, Sheindlin has garnered much fame for presiding over her own syndicated courtroom show, Judge Judy. The show's ratings have consistently ranked highly.
Sheindlin was born Judith Susan Blum in Brooklyn, New York, to Jewish parents Murray and Ethel Blum. Sheindlin described her father, a dentist, as "the greatest thing since sliced bread" and her mother as "a meat-and-potatoes kind of gal."
Sheindlin attended James Madison High School in Brooklyn before going on to American University in Washington, D.C. where she majored in government. She then enrolled at the Washington College of Law, at American University, where she was the only woman in a class of 126 students. She finished her law school education at New York Law School, where she graduated in 1965.