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Kathleen Kempe
Pat Borenstein




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Stories From Around the State

  • Date:  June 21, 2011

    Location:  Mayflower Renaissance Hotel, Washington, District of Columbia

    Event:  Conference

    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

    Event:  Lecture

    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.

  • Date:  May 17, 2011

    Location:  Capital City Club, Columbia, South Carolina

    Event:  School Program

    Partners:  South Carolina Women Lawyers Association

    The League of Women Voters of the Columbia Area hosted a luncheon featuring Representatives Bakari Sellers and Jenny Horne to recognize Grace Stonecypher; Mitchell James Gebel; Montana Rindahl; and Julisa Shawnte Muldrow, winners of the essay contest “Comparing South Carolina’s Judicial Selection Method with at Least Two Other States with Emphasis on Independence and Diversity.”  The students received the awards for overall understanding, research quality, composition, and presentation.  Judging the contest were members of the South Carolina Women Lawyers Association:  Margaret Elise Baker, Esquire; Jacquelyn Lee Bartley, Esquire; Mary Elizabeth Crum, Esquire; and Patricia Logan Harrison, Esquire.  The essay contest was a five-month effort open to all high school seniors in Richland and Lexington counties that reached out to area public and private schools for participants.

  • Date:  May 16, 2011

    Location:  Wall Auditorium, Coastal Carolina University

    Event:  Panel Discussion

    Partners:  LWV of the Darlington County; LWV of the Florence Area; American Association for University Women; Charleston School of Law; Association of Retired Americans; Girl Scouts of Eastern South Carolina; Coastal Carolina University; Coastal Carolina University Women's Resource Center; Horry County Public Library; Horry County Education Association + Retired

    The League of Women Voters of Horry County Members-at-Large Unit teamed up with the League of Women Voters of Georgetown County to organize a forum investigating ways to promote diversity on the bench, featuring three panel discussions with legal practitioners.  The speakers provided a number of ideas and suggestions, including increasing the number of candidates who can be advanced from the Judicial Merit Selection Commission to the legislature.

    The speakers included South Carolina Supreme Court Justice Kaye Hearn; Disciplinary Counsel for the South Carolina Supreme Court, Lee Coggiola; Representative George Hearn; Honorable Jennifer Wilson, Myrtle Beach Municipal Court; Solicitor Ernest Finney III, SC Third Judicial Circuit; and Natasha Hanna, attorney-member, Pee Dee Citizens Committee on Judicial Qualifications.

    The event was featured in the Charleston Law News and SC News Now.

    The full event is available as a four-part video recording on YouTube.


  • Date:  May 14, 2011

    Location:  Quality Inn, Sumter, South Carolina

    Event:  Conference

    Partners:  South Carolina Women Lawyers Association

    The League of Women Voters of South Carolina made the ongoing judicial campaign activities the focus of their 2011 State Convention in Sumter on May 14, 2011.  The Honorable Ruth McGregor, former chief justice of the Supreme Court of Arizona and a noted judicial independence advocate, delivered a keynote address (LINK:  http://lwvsc.org/files/mcgregor_speech.pdf) on the importance of a diverse bench.  The League bestowed on the Honorable Ernest Finney, the first African American Chief Justice in South Carolina, its “Spirit of Democracy Award” for his many years of service.  The conference also featured a panel on the topic of judicial selection featuring Circuit Court Judge Hon. W. Jeffrey Young; State Representative David Weeks; Janet Lynam, Pee Dee County Citizens Committee on Judicial Qualifications; South Carolina Women Lawyers Association Board Member Sarah  Leverette; and Charleston School of Law Professor Constance Anastapoulo.

    The conference was covered twice in The Sumter Item.


  • Date:  February – April, 2011

    Location:  Fairforest, Lone Oak, Chapman, and Arcadia Elementary Schools, Spartanburg, South Carolina

    Event:  School Program

    Partners:  Boys and Girls Clubs of Spartanburg; Spartanburg County Historical Association

    In collaboration with the Spartanburg County Historical Association, the League of Spartanburg developed an educational program on judicial selection in South Carolina to be used by elementary school students who participate in Boys and Girls Clubs in Spartanburg.  Each student was given a 25-page workbook that covered three lessons, after which he/she needed to share with three adults to explain what he/she has learned in this program.  The lessons culminated in a mock court event with role playing by participants and by invited members of the judiciary.  The project was so successful that the Spartanburg County Historical Association may add a second and third workbook covering the other two branches of government. 

    The participating schools were Fairforest, Lone Oak, Chapman, and Arcadia Elementary Schools.  The mock court events were presided by Jody Cusson-Worley, City prosecutor; Ponda Caldwell, Probate Judge, and Tina McMillan, Magistrate Judge.

  • Date:  April 12, 2011

    Location:  Clemson Central Library, Clemson, South Carolina

    Event:  Lecture

    Partners:  South Carolina Women Lawyers Association

    Attorney Jennifer Howe, a representative of the South Carolina Women Lawyers Association, discussed judicial diversity and how to improve South Carolina’s system for selecting judges.

  • Date:  March 21, 2011

    Location:  Cafeteria at the Darlington Magnet School, Darlington, South Carolina

    Event:  Lecture

    League Members Joyce Franklin and Sheila Haney presented a program, “How Diverse is the South Carolina Bench?,” to highlight that in South Carolina, only 22% of state judges using the merit-selection process are women, even though women comprise nearly 35% of lawyers in the state and make up 52% of the state population.  Only eight (or 7%) of the 118 judgeships are occupied by a minority judge.

  • Date:  March 14, 2011

    Location:  Seminar Room of Central Carolina Technical University, Sumter, South Carolina

    Event:  Lecture

    Master-In-Equity Richard Booth spoke about holding hearings for contested and uncontested non-jury matters.  Masters in Equity hear appeals from Magistrate and Probate Court rulings.  He is an adjunct of the Circuit Court and hears cases that may involve a lot of testimony.  In reality, most of his cases involve property foreclosures.  Judge Booth is only aware of two female “Masters” presently serving.