The passing of trailblazer Sarah Leverette

COLUMBIA – The Smith/Norrell campaign issued the following statement about the passing of Sarah Leverette, who died last week at the age of 98:

Sarah Leverette was a pioneer who never made a big deal about it. Graduating from USC law school in 1943, she not only found a lot of doors were closed to her, they were “locked.” She didn’t let that stop her.

She went on to become law librarian at USC Law School, where she taught legal research and writing to generations of South Carolina lawyers. She influenced a wide assortment of future leaders of our state, including former Gov. Dick Riley, former SC Supreme Court Chief Justice Jean Toal, and I.S. Leevy Johnson, who would become the first African-American to serve as president of the S.C. Bar.

As a force in the League of Women Voters for 60 years, she was a leading advocate for informed democracy, fair government and women’s rights.
“We have lost a tremendous force for good in our state,” said James Smith. “Sarah seemed invincible. She was a passionate advocate, a trailblazer and an example for men and women on what it means to serve. I will miss her deeply, as will everyone who knows the roles she has played in making South Carolina a better place.”

“As a woman and a lawyer, I owe a tremendous debt of gratitude to her, as do so many others,” said Mandy Powers Norrell. “We stand on her shoulders. She made it easier for the rest of us.”

Author: Rachel Howell

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