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Greenville Business Magazine

Former South Carolina Supreme Court Justice Kaye Hearn Joins Wyche, P.A.

Oct 16, 2023 01:50PM ● By David Dykes

Wyche, a leading full-service law firm with three offices across South Carolina, said Kaye Hearn, former South Carolina Supreme Court Justice, has joined the firm as Special Counsel. 

Hearn, based in Conway, S.C., will serve clients statewide as a member of Wyche’s litigation team.

"We are thrilled to welcome Justice Kaye Hearn to the Wyche team as Special Counsel. Her distinguished career on the South Carolina Supreme Court, her leadership in the judiciary, and her commitment to excellence in the legal profession make her an invaluable addition to our firm and our clients,” said Tally Parham Casey, CEO and chair of Wyche, P.A.

“Throughout my career in the South Carolina judiciary, I've witnessed Wyche's unwavering dedication to the pursuit of legal excellence and its deep-rooted commitment to the communities it serves. I look forward to bringing my years of experience to the firm and working alongside its talented team to deliver the highest level of legal representation to clients statewide,” Hearn said.

Hearn retired in April of 2023 as a Justice on the South Carolina Supreme Court. At the time of her retirement, she was the longest-serving member of the South Carolina State Court Judiciary.

She was elected to the Supreme Court of South Carolina in May of 2009, becoming only the second woman member in the court's history. 

Prior to her election to the state’s highest court, Hearn was a member of the South Carolina Court of Appeals for 15 years, serving as its Chief Judge for 10 years. 

During her tenure as Chief Judge, Hearn was president of the Council of Chief Judges, a nationwide network of chief judges of the intermediate appellate courts.

From 1986 until her election to the Court of Appeals in 1995, she was a Family Court Judge. 

Prior to going on the bench, Hearn was a trial attorney with the firm of Stevens, Stevens, Thomas, Hearn, and Hearn, and a member of the South Carolina Board of Bar Examiners. 

Immediately upon graduation from law school, she served as a law clerk to South Carolina Supreme Court Justice Julius B. Ness.  She is the only former law clerk to return to the Court as a Justice.

In 2004, Justice Hearn was honored with a portrait by the South Carolina's Trial Lawyers Association. 

In 2010, she received the South Carolina Women Lawyers Association's Jean Galloway Bissell Award; in 2011, she was honored with an award in celebration of Inspiring Women from Coastal Carolina University; and in 2012, Gov. Nikki Haley presented her the Woman of Achievement Award from the South Carolina Commission on Women.

In 2013, Hearn received the Bethany College Alumni Achievement Award and was named an Alpha Xi Delta Woman of Distinction. In 2022, she received the Outstanding Jurist Award from the American Board of Trial Advocates.

Hearn received her B.A., cum laude, from Bethany College and her J.D., cum laude, from the University of South Carolina School of Law.  

She received an LL.M. from the University of Virginia’s Graduate Program for Judges; an honorary Doctor of Laws from the Charleston School of Law; an honorary Doctor of Humanities from Francis Marion University; and an honorary Doctor of Laws from the University of South Carolina.