UMW Rector Receives Honorary Degree

The Honorable Pamela J. White, rector of the University of Mary Washington Board of Visitors, has received an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from Washington and Lee University.

The Hon. Pamela J. White, left, with Washington and Lee President Kenneth P. Ruscio prior to Judge White’s receiving an honorary degree. Photo courtesy of Washington and Lee University.

Since 2007, White has served as a judge for the circuit court of Maryland for Baltimore City.

Before that, she practiced law in Baltimore for three decades, with the bulk of her work being cases of discrimination, harassment, benefit disputes, wrongful discharges and equal-pay violations. A talented and tenacious attorney, she became the first woman to be named a partner at Ober/Kaler, Grimes & Shriver.

White, a 1974 graduate of UMW, earned her law degree at Washington and Lee University’s School of Law, where she served as editor of the Law News and a member of the Law Review.

She has served as president of both the Maryland State Bar Association and the Women’s Bar Association. A longtime supporter of legal services for the poor, she has done extensive pro bono work and served the Maryland Legal Services Corp.

“In all these capacities, you have been an advocate for access, diversity, integrity and quality in higher education,” the degree citation from W&L stated. “By your own example, you have shown how a lifelong commitment to learning can foster professional success and civic responsibility.”

In addition, this diehard Baltimore Orioles fan has been a celebrated softball player in the Lawyer’s League. In 2006 and 2007, she was named one of the best attorneys in America. In 2007, White was selected as a Maryland Super Lawyer, an honor that involves recognition of extraordinary professional powers and “the ability to leap tall courthouses in a single bound.”

For the institutions from which she earned degrees, she has been a tireless alumna and dedicated leader. In addition to leading UMW’s Board of Visitors, she served on the Board of Trustees at W&L and as president of the W&L Law Council. White continues to be an advocate for access, diversity, integrity and quality in higher education.

White’s award was presented at W&L’s commencement exercises on May 23.

About Brynn Boyer

Brynn Boyer is assistant director of media and public relations and a 2010 graduate of UMW.