Posted in: Public


Pamela D. Robinson’s effort to extend justice for all knows no bounds.

Throughout her career as founder and director of the University of South Carolina School of Law’s Pro Bono Program – the nation’s first voluntary pro bono law school program – Robinson has demonstrated her commitment to service through work with her students and the South Carolina Bar time and time again.

“The ethic of professional responsibility for providing pro bono services must be fed and nurtured for it to grow into a sustainable personal attribute,” Robinson says.  “This starts in law school and continues throughout one’s career.”

For her efforts and commitment to pro bono service, Robinson was recently honored with the 2021 Father Robert Drinan Award from the Association of American Law Schools (AALS). The award recognizes an outstanding faculty or staff member at a law school who has embodied the purpose of pro bono service through personal engagement, program design or management practices.

“Through Pam’s active involvement in many local and national professional organizations and her collaboration with numerous community partners across the state, she stays current on issues and opportunities in the public service arena so that she can both engage her students and provide assistance to citizens in need,” said Betsy Goodale, SC Bar Pro Bono Program director, in support of Robinson’s nomination for the Drinan Award.  “[Robinson] is one of the most—if not the most—well-respected and well-informed pro bono advocates and practitioners in the state of South Carolina.”

 In her role as director of the school’s Pro Bono Program, Robinson has facilitated and participated in a significant variety of enriching, hands-on service opportunities for students to make a difference in Palmetto State communities.  The Palmetto LEADER, the School of Law’s mobile legal office and Robinson’s most recent initiative, showcases her knack for forward-thinking and her unique ability to bring service to the underserved. 

Robinson also launched the idea for the monthly Free Legal Answers Blitz, a partnership between the SC Bar and the University of South Carolina School of Law to answer questions on the SC Free Legal Answers website. Robinson helps to nurture her students’ growth by connecting aspiring young professionals at the university with active members practicing law across the Palmetto State. 

Robinson also maintains involvement as a member of the SC Bar Children’s Committee and the Senior Lawyers Division Executive Committee.

“Pam Robinson enthusiastically participates and promotes many pro bono activities – including Lawyers for the Arts, Free Legal Answers Clinics, and nominees for Pro Bono awards for Senior Lawyers,” said Carolyn Matthews, President of the SC Bar Senior Lawyers Division.  “Pam is an excellent liaison between the Senior Lawyers Division – which comprises one-fourth of the members of the SC Bar – and the University of South Carolina Law School.”

 Additionally, Robinson has held leadership roles in the AALS Section on Pro Bono and Public Service Opportunities for over 16 years since its formation in 2005. 

This is not the first time Robinson has been recognized for her impact on the communities she serves.   A sampling of Robinson’s achievements includes the SC Bar Pro Bono Program Service Award, the USC Ambassador of Service Award, the USC MLK Day Social Justice Award, SC Lawyer of the Year from SC Lawyers Weekly and the SC Bar Senior Lawyers Division “Pro Bono Award.”  For a full summary of Robinson’s impact, achievements and honors, view her biography on the University of South Carolina School of Law website.

Featured image by University of South Carolina School of Law