Merrick Brian Garland was born on November 13, 1952, in Chicago. He grew up in the northern Chicago suburb of Lincolnwood. His mother Shirley (née Horwitz) was a director of volunteer services at Chicago's Council for Jewish Elderly (now called CJE SeniorLife). His father, Cyril Garland, headed Garland Advertising, a small business run out of the family home. Garland was raised in Conservative Judaism, the family name having been changed from Garfinkel several generations prior.
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