Information from Legacy.com
In loving memory of our sweet Julia, who passed away unexpectedly on March 18, 2021 at the age of 26, with a world of hope and possibilities still ahead of her, and a life’s worth of accomplishments, love, and joy already behind.
Julia Elizabeth Ghahramani was born on May 24, 1994 in New York City’s Mt. Sinai Hospital. She grew up in Greenwich, Connecticut, and was the eldest child of Lily Ann Marden and Sassan Ghahramani, and the loving sister of Kimberly Ghahramani and Gregory Ghahramani.
In Greenwich, she attended the Parkway Elementary School, Central Middle School, Greenwich High School, Beacon School, and Riverdale Country School in the Bronx. In 2012, Julia moved to her beloved New York City to attend Columbia University.
She graduated from Columbia College in 2016 with flying colors, Magna Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science.
Moving from Morningside Heights to the East Village, Julia spent a year after Columbia working as a production assistant at WNBC News 4 New York, where management would have such confidence in her that they would soon send her on interviews despite her lack of any experience in that area. Julia then threw herself into her graduate degree studies at Columbia Law School, where she obtained a Juris Doctor degree in 2020, and was awarded and recognized as a Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar.
Julia was also proud to be an active member of and contributor to the prestigious Columbia Law Review, where one of her most cherished moments was a trip to Washington DC to meet with her hero and fellow Law Review alumna, the late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, before she passed.
After the 2018 Marjory Stoneman Douglas school shootings in Florida, Julia helped organize and lead the New York March for Our Lives demonstrations in the spring of 2018 as the movement’s deputy director and press liaison, speaking on the steps of City Hall.
Driven and always active, Julia also worked while in school at organizations including the International Crisis Group, the NY State Office of the Attorney General, the Center for Popular Democracy, Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld, and at the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, where she did an externship for the Honorable Robert D. Sack.
Julia had only just embarked last year on an exciting new career in the litigation department of the law firm of Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld, where in a few brief months she touched and made a powerful impression on her colleagues like she would on every person she would meet. Vivacious, fun, full of laughter, joy, and love, and with a mind that was brilliant beyond words, Julia had a heart that was so large and deep with empathy it would always seek to protect the underdog and reach out to those in need. Asa first-year associate, Julia would throw herself into her pro-bono work with refugees, abused women, and prisoners with every inch of her being.
For Julia, there was no other way. Julia would always, without fail, make time to reach out to her mom, dad, brother and sister, aunt and uncles, grandmothers, cousins, and friends. She would chat and talk of her life, but the conversation would always turn to how are you doing, because what she was doing was checking in on you, and because she cared so very much. She would engage with strangers and with people of all ages and backgrounds, the bodega and laundromat workers, the neighborhood doormen and waiters, because it was connecting with people that she loved most. And everyone she met would remember Julia.
Julia was sweet, brash, and bold. It seems that since the day she was born, Julia would put herself out there, with full gusto and a big smile. Her fifth-grade yearbook read, “My favorite Parkway memory was in second grade when Mrs. Schutzman’s class hatched ducklings. My favorite book is Mortal Engine, a story that takes place 1,000 years in the future. I want to be the president of the United States when I grow up. (Vote for me!)” As one of her childhood friends laughed, that last line was so Julia, especially the plug for a vote!
Julia could speed through hundreds of pages of reading in a matter of a day or two, be it a novel or the most complex academic or legal documents, and amazingly, retain it all. She would seem to effortlessly absorb and analyze current affairs and the news, yet also take enormous pleasure in the softest and smallest things of life. She would regularly beat her dad in Jeopardy, in seemingly every category under the sun, and they would laugh about it as his heart burst with pride.
Julia loved music — she had a strong and beautiful singing voice and for fun taught herself guitar. She loved to socialize, pop culture and silly gossip, museums and art, goofy animal memes, her dog Charlotte and her plants, sushi dinners and parties with friends, and taking in the rhythms of her East Village neighborhood. Beneath it all, Julia felt things personally and deeply, driven by a burning desire to make everything right and this world a better place for all. In her 11th grade yearbook, Julia wrote that her future goal was, “To change the world, one way or another!”
Dear Julia, you did that from day one, and then so many times over. Julia was the apple of Lily Ann and Sassan’s eyes and a shining star to her twin siblings Kimberly and Gregory, to her aunt, uncles, grandmothers, cousins, and to all the friends, family, and strangers she so deeply touched in the brief but brilliant, years she blessed us with her love, joy, wisdom, and laughter.
Julia’s senior high school yearbook quote was simple, beautiful but unusually simple for a mind that raced at the speed of light. It was not about her, or about the challenges of future life as seen through the eyes of a teen. Rather, she just wrote, “Thank you Mom, Dad, Kim, and Greg, for everything. Love always, Julia.” Thank you, Julia, for everything. We love you, too, always. Mom, Dad, Kim, and Greg