Robert Kardashian - The Life and Legacy of Robert Kardashian - 12/Apr/2024

Robert Kardashian – The Life and Legacy of Robert Kardashian – 12/Apr/2024

The Life and Legacy of Robert Kardashian

Robert Kardashian was an American attorney and businessman who gained national recognition as one of O.J. Simpson’s defense attorneys during Simpson’s 1995 murder trial. Known to some by his celebrity children and his former marriage to Kris Jenner, Kardashian’s life was punctuated with several professional successes, notable personal relationships, and a lasting cultural impact even years after his passing.

Early Life and Education of Robert Kardashian

Born on February 22, 1944, in Los Angeles, California, Robert George Kardashian was the son of Armenian-American parents. He was raised with a strong sense of his Armenian heritage and would later become a stalwart supporter of Armenian-American causes.

Kardashian attended Susan Miller Dorsey High School in Los Angeles before moving on to higher education. He earned his business degree from the University of Southern California where he was also a member of the Sigma Chi fraternity. After pursuing his bachelor’s degree, he went on to obtain a law degree from the University of San Diego School of Law.

Business Ventures and Legal Career

Beyond the courtroom, Robert Kardashian was a savvy businessman. Before his leap into law, he ventured into the music business, starting a company called Radio & Records with his brother Tommy. Throughout his life, Kardashian would engage in various business pursuits, highlighting his entrepreneurial spirit.

His legal career indeed took off when he passed the bar exam in California and began practicing. It wasn’t until later that he would close his practice for a short while to focus on business endeavors before reopening it in anticipation of involvement in the O.J. Simpson trial.

Robert Kardashian and the O.J. Simpson Trial

Perhaps the most defining professional moment for Robert Kardashian was his involvement in the trial of his friend O.J. Simpson who was accused of murdering his ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend Ron Goldman. Although he had let his license to practice law become inactive before the case, Kardashian renewed it to join Simpson’s defense team as a volunteer assistant on his “Dream Team” of lawyers including Johnnie Cochran and Robert Shapiro.

Despite not having practiced law in some years, Kardashian played a role in the case that brought him into the living rooms of millions via television broadcast. His support for O.J. Simpson would become a crucial part of the trial narrative and shape public perception.

Personal Life and Relationships

Robert’s personal life also garnered significant attention due to his marriage to Kris Houghton (later Kris Jenner) in 1978. Together they had four children: Kourtney, Kim, Khloé, and Robert Jr., all who have become prominent figures in entertainment and media.

The marriage between Kris Jenner and Robert Kardashian ended in 1991 but they remained friends until his passing. Following their divorce, Jenner married Caitlyn Jenner (formerly Bruce), with whom she had two more children, Kendall and Kylie Jenner.

Death and Posthumous Recognition

Robert Kardashian was diagnosed with esophageal cancer in July 2003 and passed away less than eight weeks later on September 30, 2003, at the age of 59.

Following his death, Kardashian’s children have kept his memory alive through their reality television show “Keeping Up with the Kardashians” as well as through other public statements and acts to honor their father.

Cultural Impact

Robert Kardashian’s legacy has largely been intertwined with pop culture due to his famous children’s status as reality TV stars and influencers. Their show has brought renewed attention to Robert’s life and career, even exploring aspects related to the O.J. Simpson trial through dramatized accounts like “The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story.”

His image as both an attorney during one of the most publicized trials in America and as the father of well-known celebrities places him at an interesting crossroads between legal history and entertainment culture.


  • Robert Kardashian was born on February 22, 1944, and passed away on September 30, 2003.
  • He graduated from University of Southern California with a business degree before completing his J.D. at University of San Diego School of Law.
  • Kardashian first came into national prominence when he defended O.J. Simpson during his 1995 murder trial.
  • He was married to Kris Jenner from 1978 to 1991 and had four children who became television personalities: Kourtney, Kim, Khloé, and Robert Jr.
  • Image Description

    An archival photo depicts Robert Kardashian wearing a suit, standing confidently with a composed expression—a distinguished middle-aged man whose appearance is characteristic of an experienced lawyer against the backdrop of a courtroom setting or legal library.