The confirmation of Sonia Sotomayor as the first Hispanic Supreme Court justice was hailed Thursday as an inspiration for Americans.
The Senate vote represented another step forward to a "more perfect union," Obama said, with representatives of minority groups and high-ranking politicians echoing his words.
The Asian American Justice Center (AAJC) said her confirmation helped to make US courts "more reflective of America in the 21st century."
Sandra Day O’Connor became the first woman to serve as a justice on the United States Supreme Court in 1981, followed 12 years later by Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
O’Connor stepped down from the Supreme Court in 2006, and in the 16 years that have elapsed since Ginsburg was confirmed as a justice, three men — and no women — were elevated to the high court.