20th Anniversary Celebration

20th Anniversary Celebration Committee

20 Things You Might Not Know

20 Things You Can Do

Where are they now?

History of the Pro Bono Program

For the Good of the Order

Pro Bono Program

Where are they now?

Nancy Layman

What kind of pro bono or volunteer work have you been involved in?
Since graduating from USC Law in 1992, I've been involved in various pro bono work from time to time. I've read books and articles on the radio for the Commission for the Blind, taught English as a Second Language at the public library, participated in a program to read to middle school students when I worked at the Dept. of Health as well as numerous March of Dimes programs and walks while there, collected money for the Heart Association. I've sat on the Boards of the Centers for Equal Justice and the Dept. of Mental Health. Right now I'm president-elect of the Senior Lawyers Division of the Bar and recently planned the Divisions presentation at the Bar meeting.

What are the main reasons why you would recommend that law students become involved in pro bono work?
Pro bono work puts you in touch with your community and makes you aware of problems and situations you otherwise would not have known about. Pro bono work contributes toward the public's positive view of attorneys in general. Most of all, it feels good!

Has pro bono work contributed to your sense of career satisfaction?

Did your experiences in the Pro Bono program at USC prepare you or benefit you in your career?
The Pro Bono program at USC is one of the greatest assets of the law school. It encourages law students to reach out to their communities and sacrifice some of their personal time to help other people. It takes the emphasis off life after law school as merely payment for services rendered. People who are helped spread the word and it contributes to having paying clients.

In your career, have you seen an overlap between your volunteer work and your sense of your own place in the community and the legal profession?

How do pro bono efforts fit in to the work of the South Carolina Bar?

What kind of perceptions, positive or negative, do you think that the bar as a whole has about attorneys who are actively involved in pro bono work?
The Bar actively encourages pro bono work and holds up lawyers who put in hours of pro bono work as exemplars. Lawyers who perform pro bono work are seen as selfless and models to aspire to be like.

What is most memorable/best experience you had during your law school career through the Pro Bono program?
As a result of USC Law School's strong pro bono program, USC was chosen as a "Point of Light," an honor established by President Bush in 1991. Volunteers from programs throughout all 50 states were sent to Disney Land for a couple of days to mingle and to listen to speakers. It was amazing to get to know diverse people and listen to the stories about their programs and the great things they were accomplishing.

How would you encourage current law students to get involved with the Pro Bono program?
All it takes is a few willing volunteer students who will speak to their friends and other students in their classes and encourage them to volunteer. The satisfaction derived from pro bono work is contagious.

What does the 20th Anniversary of the Pro Bono program mean to you?
It means the program is still going strong-a testament to the hard work and dedication that Pam has in overseeing the program. And it means that students find pro bono work rewarding and the public finds it beneficial.

What is your most cherished memory with Pam?
(have to think on this one) Pam gets to comment! I have great memories of Nancy and I attending the Points of Light Celebration at Disney World in 1991. We were treated like royalty but she was still a student and had to find time to study between all the celebratory activities!