The University of South Carolina has announced that former South Carolina Gov. David Beasley will join the faculty of its Joseph F. Rice School of Law.
Beasley receives the full-time appointment, effective March 1, as Distinguished Professor of Practice and Public Service in the law school’s Department of Legal Studies.
“The mission of the law school is to educate lawyer leaders for their communities, our state and nation,” said William Hubbard, dean of the Joseph F. Rice School of Law. “Gov. Beasley’s example of exemplary leadership and public service will inspire our students, broaden their perspectives and enhance their international understanding.”
Beasley presided as governor from 1995 to 1999 and is credited with reforming state government and helping revitalize the state’s struggling economy. Between 2017 and 2023, he served as executive director of the U.N. World Food Programme, the world’s largest humanitarian organization, feeding hundreds of millions of starving people in more than 80 countries. He received the Nobel Peace Prize in 2020 on behalf of the organization for its efforts to combat hunger and conflict around the world and make peace.
While serving as governor, Beasley advocated for the removal of the Confederate flag from the State House dome. His efforts earned him the John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Award in 2003. The flag was finally removed from the State House grounds in 2015 after nine people were killed in a mass shooting at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston.
“Little did I know the challenges and adventures I was being prepared for in law school. But the way the University of South Carolina Law School taught me to think and act with integrity was very important to it all,” said Beasley. “To now have a chance to give back to a new generation of future leaders is one of the great opportunities of my life.”
Beasley holds a bachelor’s degree in interdisciplinary studies as well as a juris doctorate degree from the University of South Carolina. He will teach and give guest lectures at the law school, the Honors College, and the College of Arts and Sciences.
“The rule of law is the cornerstone of human freedom and progress,” Beasley said. “I’m thrilled to be engaged in making better lawyers, better law, and freer societies wherever our students go.
“We are taught that ‘To whom much has been given, much will be required,’” he continued. “I’m happy and proud to give back to the University of South Carolina and the state that has been so generous and nurturing to me."