OXFORD, Miss.–Karen Peairs, assistant director for the Career Services Office at the University of Mississippi School of Law, was named recently as president of the Magnolia Bar, an organization whose purpose is to articulate the various problems confronting blacks and other people of color, and to assure that justice prevails in Mississippi.
In her new role, Peairs will be responsible for presiding over all meetings for the year, and for the oversight of the Bar’s programming.
“Karen Peairs has been a committed and dedicated member of the Magnolia Bar,” said Debbie Bell, dean. “We are proud that her efforts and leadership have been recognized with this honor.”
She will be helping organize their Annual Boy’s and Girl’s Law Camp, the Tougaloo Summit, Fall CLE Program, their Mid-Winter Meeting and Banquet, Judicial Symposium and the Magnolia Bar Association Annual Meeting as a part of the Mississippi Black Professionals Association.
In addition to this, Peairs says she has some personal goals she wishes to accomplish.
“I really want to grow membership within the Magnolia Bar and in districts outside of Jackson to ensure their participation,” she siad. “I also hope to strengthen our program to attract new people to the legal profession, and then help new lawyers overcome some of the difficulties of becoming lawyers.”
Peairs also said she wants to expand the organization’s existing programming to diminish unmet legal needs in Mississippi.
Peairs got involved with the Bar by attending meetings, and was eventually assigned a district director position for the northeast district, where she won district director of the year. She organized programming such as a meet and greet between the law school’s BLSA chapter and the Magnolia Bar, got alumni involved to help African American students, and also worked for several years on the organization’s expungement clinic, which is held at the law school.
Peairs has counseled undergraduate and law students for nearly 15 years. She holds bachelor’s degrees in psychology and African American studies from Washington University in St. Louis, and a master’s in clinical psychology from Emory University.
She worked as a career specialist and instructor in Higher Education for the undergraduate Career Center at the University of Mississippi before taking a position as the associate director for Career Services at the University of Baltimore School of Law in Baltimore, Maryland. While working at that law school, she decided to pursue her law degree, which she received from the University of Maryland in 2004.
She is a member in good-standing of the Mississippi Bar Association and is also a newly appointed board member for the North Mississippi Rural Legal Services.