South Carolina Environmental Law Project

Lawyers for the Wild Side of South Carolina

SCELP Director to Take Home the Silver
Posted: February 19, 2015

Amy Armstrong received recognition from the University of South Carolina School of Law this year with prestigious Silver Compleat Lawyer Award. Silver Awards are granted to alumni who have been practicing law for less than fifteen years but have distinguished themselves in the field with their “extraordinarily high standards of professional competence, ethics, integrity, and who have demonstrated superior performance in their professional career.” In her nearly 13 years practicing law at SCELP, Amy has more than demonstrated these admirable qualities again and again, in and out of the courtroom.

In the years since she graduated from USC Law and started her career at SCELP, Amy has brought and won cases that have set important precedents in our state's highest courts. For instance, the favorable decision in Smiley v. DHEC assured private citizens the right to challenge regulatory permitting decisions. In Spectre v. DHEC, the Supreme Court upheld the validity of the Coastal Zone Management Program and held that it is applicable to isolated wetlands. In 2014, the Supreme Court overturned a landfill permit in EAGLE v. DHEC & MRR Hwy 92 on the basis that the Solid Waste Management Act requires that a landfill be actually needed. Most recently, her victory in Kiawah Development Partners v. DHEC and SCCCL prevented the construction of a half-mile long, 40’ wide concrete wall covering the sandy beaches of Kiawah River and preserved the public interest in protecting the shoreline.

Outside of the courtroom she serves on the Coastal Community Foundation’s board of directors and is Chair of the Bunnelle Foundation. She also serves on the steering committee of the South Carolina Conservation Coalition. Though a native of Columbia, Amy is fully engrained in the Georgetown County community, and her involvement extends far beyond environmental issues. She is a municipal judge for the City of Georgetown, a member of the League of Women Voters of Georgetown County, a member of the local Sierra Club and is in her second year of her Liberty Fellowship through which she is addressing the lack of access to healthy food in the County.

The selection committee for this award consists of the Chief Justice of the South Carolina Supreme Court, the Chief Judge of the South Carolina Court of Appeals, the President of the South Carolina Bar, the co-chair of the Law School Alumni Council and the Dean of the Law School. Amy was nominated for this honor by her peers, it will be presented to her at the Annual Alumni dinner on April 30, 2015.