S.C. Bar to honor Pro Bono Award winner March 21 at Bar Foundation Gala

March 05, 2014

COLUMBIA, S.C. (March 5, 2014)—The S.C. Bar will bestow the 2014 Pro Bono Award upon Sharon Young Ward of Charleston for her contributions to meeting the civil legal needs of citizens who cannot afford the services of an attorney. The award will be presented during the S.C. Bar Foundation Gala on March 21 at The Hall at Senate’s End in Columbia.

Ms. Ward earned her Bachelor of Science from Emory University and her Juris Doctor from the Charleston School of Law in 2007. Upon graduation, Ms. Ward served as an instructor at the National Advocacy Center, staff attorney with the S.C. Court of Appeals, and law clerk to the Hon. John W. Kittredge (S.C. Supreme Court) and the Hon. John D. Geathers (S.C. Court of Appeals).

During her time at the Court of Appeals, Ms. Ward developed a step-by-step guide to S.C. appellate law, providing a helpful resource for self-represented litigants.

In 2012, Ms. Ward began volunteering with South Carolina Legal Services (SCLS), providing pro bono support in the area of S.C. appellate practice. Throughout her time with SCLS, Ms. Ward has provided invaluable knowledge and skills in a variety of cases including family law, unemployment benefits, adverse possession of property and consumer law. In his nomination letter, SCLS Senior Litigation Attorney Kirby R. Mitchell wrote: “Simply put, these appeals are among the most difficult and important cases SCLS has handled in recent years, and as a pro bono volunteer, Sharon has been a critical part of SCLS’s efforts and success.”

Sharon is also active in her community, having founded Parents & Children Together (PACT) in 1991, a nonprofit organization that provides family support programs to parents and young children in the Charleston area. Ms. Ward has also served on the Board of Directors for the Juvenile Restitution Program and the Dee Norton Lowcountry Children’s Center, and was an executive committee member of the Charleston Civic Forum.

“What is uncommon about Sharon is her unbelievable kindness, unmatched thoughtfulness and constant desire to help others along her way,” said Tanya A. Gee of the Columbia office of Nexsen Pruet. “Sharon … is the type of attorney who inspires you. In the legal community and beyond, [she] has made a name for herself because of her sunny disposition, keen mind and innate desire to help others.”

The S.C. Bar Pro Bono Award is presented annually to a lawyer(s) who has demonstrated outstanding commitment to volunteer legal services for the poor and disadvantaged. These services ensure that representation is provided to individuals and families in need of free civil legal assistance.

The South Carolina Bar, which has a membership of more than 14,500 lawyers, is dedicated to advancing justice, professionalism and understanding of the law.

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