President Ed Bell receives the Order of the Palmetto from Gov. Henry McMaster

On Monday, June 7, Charleston School of Law president J. Edward Bell was awarded the state’s highest civilian honor, the Order of the Palmetto, by Gov. Henry McMaster.

In a statehouse ceremony, Gov. McMaster commended President Bell for the work he has done with the law school and “with his law practice and with his philanthropy and lifting people up. [It’s] a record that is very difficult to exceed in South Carolina,” he said.

In his comments to the Governor, President Bell wondered if they got the right person, laughed, and then expressed his gratitude for such an award and special honor.

“My father received this award many years ago for the work that he had done, and I feel humbled to receive the Order of the Palmetto and hope that I can continue to earn it as I move forward,” he said at the ceremony.

The award was established in 1971 and first awarded by Gov. John C. West to recognize outstanding service to the state. President Bell joins a prominent list of Order of the Palmetto recipients, including singer James Brown, novelist Pat Conroy, and civil rights leader Septima P. Clark.

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