State Bar of Georgia
State Bar of Georgia

Georgia legal community mourns loss of Judge Dorothy Toth Beasley

May 23, 2024
By J. Antonio “Tony” DelCampo

Daily Report

To the Editor:

On behalf of the State Bar of Georgia, I am writing to extend condolences to the family, colleagues and many friends of retired Court of Appeals of Georgia Chief Judge Dorothy Toth Beasley on her passing at the age of 86.

Having started her legal career in Arlington, Virginia, Judge Beasley moved to Atlanta and was admitted to the State Bar of Georgia in 1969. She first joined the Fisher & Phillips law firm, then worked as a prosecutor in the Georgia Attorney General’s Office and, later, as an assistant U.S. attorney.

She was a trailblazer in the legal profession and justice system, becoming the first woman appointed (1977, by Gov. George Busbee) and then elected (1978) as a judge for the Fulton County State Court. In 1984, Gov. Joe Frank Harris appointed her to the Court of Appeals as Georgia’s first female appellate court judge. She served 15 years on the Court of Appeals, including a term as chief judge in 1994-95, again as the first woman to serve in that capacity.

After retiring from the bench, Judge Beasley remained active as a mediator and volunteer for justice-related causes. Having earned her law degree from American University’s Washington College of Law, she served on its Dean’s Advisory Council and made a gift to establish the Stephen and Beatrice Dodd Toth Endowed Scholarship Fund to honor her parents and support law students interested in public service. 

Judge Dorothy Toth Beasley will be missed and fondly remembered by her fellow members of Georgia’s legal community. We appreciate her dedication and the many contributions she made through her service to the public and the justice system during her extraordinary career.

J. Antonio “Tony” DelCampo
President, State Bar of Georgia