American Bar Association Selects Hulett ‘Bucky’ Askew to Become Consultant on Legal Education
CHICAGO, Dec. 20, 2005 – American Bar Association Executive Director Robert A. Stein today announced the selection of Hulett “Bucky” Askew, director of the Office of Bar Admissions for the Supreme Court of Georgia, as ABA consultant on legal education.
As consultant, Askew will be a senior manager within the ABA and the highest level administrator of the association’s Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar, the first membership unit of the nation’s premier lawyers’ professional association. He will succeed John Sebert as consultant at the beginning of the next ABA year in September 2006. Sebert announced his intent to resign the position in April.
The section is responsible for accrediting law schools and periodically evaluating their continued compliance with association standards for law school approval. It is recognized by the U.S. Department of Education as an official accrediting agency for law schools across the country.
Stein cited Askew’s career of expansive service to the profession and the legal system as providing assurance that Askew will foster strong ties between the profession and academia. “Bucky understands the profession’s commitment to professionalism, to public service and to broadened access to the legal system, and will strengthen the shared commitment of the practicing bar and of the nation’s law schools to serve those ideals,” he said.
“The nation and the legal profession are particularly fortunate that Bucky has agreed to accept this position,” said Stein. “His vision for legal education is that it advance the profession’s goal of making our justice system accessible for all. If our nation is to continue to thrive, it is important that the legal profession work to ensure that all levels of society enjoy the benefits of the rule of law.”
“Bucky brings extensive and broad experience managing programs that are national in scope to the important work of assuring the public that lawyers in this country have undergone rigorous education in professionalism, ethics and substantive law,” said Steven R. Smith of San Diego, dean of the California Western School of Law and chair of the ABA section.
“He has participated in the law school approval process on the ground, and understands that each law school in this country offers unique and valuable experiences that provide prospective students a selection of rich and rewarding options for their professional development. As a bar admissions director, he appreciates both the educational needs of students and the expectations of the public that our legal academic institutions will warrant the trust and confidence in which they are held,” said Smith.
Askew became director of the Georgia bar admissions office, an agency of the Supreme Court of Georgia, in 1990. In addition to his admissions responsibilities, he also was executive director of the Chief Justice’s Commission on Professionalism from 1990 to 1996.
Previously, he was director of the civil division of the National Legal Aid and Defender Association. He also was director of field services for the Legal Services Corporation, a private, non-profit corporation established and funded by Congress to promote equal access to justice by dispensing grants to local programs providing civil legal assistance to those who otherwise would be unable to afford it. He also served LSC as a regional director, and was a deputy regional director for legal services in the federal Office of Economic Opportunity before LSC was created in 1974.
Askew continued his relationship with LSC as an appointee of President Clinton to the LSC board for nine years and now as a member of the board of directors of Friends of LSC. He is a member of the board of trustees of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law and a member of the National Legal Aid and Defender Association.
Askew has demonstrated leadership in numerous professional associations. He is co-chair of the Access to Justice Committee of the State Bar of Georgia, and a member of the state bar’s Committee on Standards of the Profession. He also has been a member of the state bar Committee on Professionalism and Individual Rights Section. He is a member of the Multistate Performance Test Policy Committee and the Minority Affairs Committee of the National Conference of Bar Examiners.
In the ABA, Askew is a member of the governing council of the Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar and of the Standing Committee on Legal Aid and Indigent Defendants. He has served the section in several other capacities, including as chair of a subcommittee to accredit foreign study programs that U.S. law schools provide for their students, and as vice chair of the Accreditation Committee. He also has been a member of the section’s Bar Admissions Committee, and of the association’s standing committees on Professionalism and on Professional Discipline.
As a leader of the Georgia legal community, Askew serves on the board of the Georgia Legal History Foundation. He is a past president of the Emory Law School Alumni Association, past member of the Emory Law School Council and member of the advisory board of the Emory Public Interest Committee.
Askew and his spouse, Cathy Walp Askew, have two adult children. He received his law degree from Emory University School of Law in 1967 and his bachelor of arts degree in history from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1964.
With more than 400,000 members, the American Bar Association is the largest voluntary professional membership organization in the world. As the national voice of the legal profession, the ABA works to improve the administration of justice, promotes programs that assist lawyers and judges in their work, accredits law schools, provides continuing legal education, and works to build public understanding around the world of the importance of the rule of law in a democratic society.