Tom C. Clark (1899-1977) was a native of Dallas, Texas. After attending Virginia Military Institute, Clark received his bachelor's and law degrees from the University of Texas. After practicing law in Dallas, he joined the U.S. Department of Justice in 1937 and headed its criminal and antitrust divisions. Clark was appointed Attorney General by President Harry Truman in 1945 and served in this position for four years, until President Truman appointed him to the U.S. Supreme Court.
Clark remained on the Court until 1967. He resigned to avoid a conflict of interest after his son, Ramsey Clark, was named U.S. Attorney General. Justice Clark was known as a defender of human rights. He was a member of the court that unanimously declared public school segregation unconstitutional. He wrote the court's opinions that required desegregation, upholding the civil rights act of 1964. His final opinion on the court limited the use of eavesdropping devices by the state.