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Stories From Around the State
Date: 7 PM, October 12, 2011
Location: Visual Performing Arts Center at Hilton Head Island High School, Hilton Head Island, South Carolina
Event: Panel Discussion
The League of Women Voters of Hilton Head Island/Bluffton sponsored a forum entitled “A Case for Diversity in South Carolina Courts,” featuring a panel of knowledgeable participants in the state judicial selection process. Panel members included State Senator Tom Davis; State Representative Andy Patrick; the Honorable Judge Carmen T. Mullen (14th Judicial Circuit); Kelly Jolley, Board member of the South Carolina Women Lawyers Association; and State Representative David Mack III, member of the Judicial Merit Selection Commission. Barbara Zia, Co-President of League of Women Voters of South Carolina, also presented an overview of the “Quest for a More Diverse Judiciary” campaign. This event was free to the public and approved for 1.5 CLE credits from the South Carolina Bar Association.
The coverage in The Beaufort Gazette noted that although there was not unanimous agreement on the League’s recommendations to reform South Carolina judicial selection, the event served to bring about needed dialogue. State Rep. David Mack III, who serves on the Judicial Merit Selection Commission and was on the panel, said: "To me, the biggest thing about this is we're having the dialogue; we're having the discussion."
The Brennan Center for Justice featured the forum in its Fair Courts E-lert, while the Justice at Stake Initiative featured it on its Gavel Grab blog.
Date: 7 PM, September 30, 2011
Location: Ernest F. Hollings Collections Library, Thomas Cooper Library at the University of South Carolina, Columbia, South Carolina
Partners: University of South Carolina Library System
The League of Women Voters of South Carolina celebrated their 60th anniversary by presenting the oral histories of the group’s past presidents to the archives at the University of South Carolina. Barbara Zia, Co-President of the League, gave remarks on the ongoing judicial diversity initiative as part of the program.
Date: September 14, 2011
Location: Columbia, SC
Partners: South Carolina Bar Association
The League of Women Voters of South Carolina met with leaders from the South Carolina Bar Association to share the mission of the ongoing judicial initiative and assess the Bar’s position on various potential reforms to the state judicial selection process.
Date: September 12, 2011
Location: Seminar Room of Central Carolina Technical University’s Health Sciences Building, Sumter, South Carolina
The League of Women Voters of Sumter County hosted staff attorneys for the Supreme Court of South Carolina, Blair Camp and Lindsay Joyner, for a discussion of iCivics, the website developed by former U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor that features games that teach players about our courts and government. iCivics, which fits within the framework of the League’s ongoing judicial education campaign, is currently being promoted in some school districts in South Carolina under the supervision of Dr. Jane Brailsford.
Date: September 7, 2011
Location: Statehouse Lobby, Columbia, South Carolina
Event: Press Conference
Partners: The Southeastern Institute for Women in Politics
The League of Women Voters of South Carolina joined The Southeastern Institute for Women in Politics at the Statehouse to mark Women’s Equality Day with a press conference about the status of women in government. Sarah Leverette, Board member of the South Carolina Women Lawyers Association and member of the League of Women Voters of Columbia, spoke to the crowd about the importance of having women on the bench and featured the ongoing judicial initiative.
Date: July 16, 2011
Location: University Center, Greenville, South Carolina
Partners: South Carolina Women Lawyers Association
Jennifer Howe, member of the South Carolina Women Lawyers Association, discussed judicial diversity in South Carolina and focused on how to improve the state’s system for selecting judges. Ms. Howe was also a speaker at an earlier campaign forum hosted by the League of Women Voters of Clemson Area.
Date: July 11-15, 2011
Location: Crescent Hills Summer Camp, Spartanburg, South Carolina
Event: School Program
Partners: Boys and Girls Clubs of Spartanburg County; Spartanburg County Historical Association
The League of Women Voters of Spartanburg County held a week of their successful “Laws and Courts are Our Friends” educational program during Crescent Hills Summer Camp.
By: Cynthia Padera
Date: June 21, 2011
Location: Mayflower Renaissance Hotel, Washington, District of Columbia
Partners: Charleston School of Law; American Association of Law Schools
On June 21, 2011, League of Women Voters of Charleston Member Constance Anastapoulo, recently named Professor of the Year at Charleston Law, presented in Washington, DC, at the American Association of Law School's Workshop on Women Rethinking Equality on the topic of "Why Diversity on the Bench Matters." The talk was an extension of Professor Anastopoulo's work on the “Quest for a More Diverse Judiciary” campaign in South Carolina.
Date: May 25, 2011
Location: The Point Grill, Charleston, South Carolina
In a heartfelt, revealing account of her removal from the bench as Family Court judge, and one of her first public appearances since Segars-Andrews v. Judicial Merit Selection Commission, former Judge Frances Segars-Andrews illustrated from her own experience the consequences of a lack of judicial independence in South Carolina. She emphasized the importance of this public policy issue and commended the League for its efforts.