Judith Vladeck was born in Norfolk, Virginia. She attended Hunter College in New York City and graduated from Columbia Law School in 1947, during an era when the placement office didn't send women on job interviews. "I went to work for the only law firm that would hire me," she said. She practiced law ever since, and was known as a pioneer in representing individuals and classes in sex, age and race discrimination litigation. She was a partner at Vladeck, Waldman, Elias & Engelhard, which specializes in employment law and civil liberties law.
Ms. Vladeck was a Director of the American Arbitration Association, the AFL-CIO Lawyers Coordinating Committee and the Institute for Education and Research on Women & Work. She was an Adjunct Professor at Fordham Law School and Cornell School of Industrial and Labor Relations, where she taught employment and labor law. She was a frequent speaker for professional groups and had authored and co-authored books and articles on labor and employment law.
She had received numerous awards including the Margaret Brent Women Lawyers of Achievement Award from the ABA in 2002, the Edith I. Spivack Award from the New York County Lawyers Association in 1998, Outstanding Achievement Award from the National Network of Women Union Lawyers in 1998, and the ORT Jurisprudence Award in 1996. She was a member of The Hunter College Hall of Fame, and recipient of Hunter's Professional Achievement Award.
Ms. Vladeck was named one of "New York's 75 Most Influential Women in Business" in Crain's New York Business in 1996 and one of The Best Lawyers in New York by New York Magazine in 1995. She was profiled in the New York Times, the Institutional Investor, More and Mirabella magazines, and was featured in Stud's Terkel's book Coming of Age.
Non-Traditional Employment for Women (NEW) named its building in New York City, The Judith P. Vladeck Center for Women, in September 1989.
Judith Vladeck was married to labor lawyer Stephen C. Vladeck until his death in 1979.
Dennis Hevesi, Judith Vladeck, 83, Who Fought for Women’s Rights, Dies, The New York Times (Jan. 11, 2007), https://www.nytimes.com/2007/01/11/nyregion/11vladeck.html [https://perma.cc/JW2A-PKDH].