John Cannon Few is the Chief Judge of the South Carolina Court of Appeals.
John was born in Anderson on April 9, 1963. He grew up in Greenwood, and graduated from Greenwood High School in 1981. He attended college at Duke University, where he served as Duke's athletic mascot, the Blue Devil, during his junior year. John graduated from Duke in 1985 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and Economics.
John went on to attend the University of South Carolina School of Law, where he was a member of The Order of Wig and Robe and The Order of the Coif. He also served as Student Works Editor of the South Carolina Law Review. He received his Juris Doctor degree in 1988.
John began his legal career as law clerk to The Honorable G. Ross Anderson, Jr., United States District Judge. He practiced law in Greenville from 1989 until 2000, and is admitted to practice in South Carolina, the United States District Court for the District of South Carolina, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, and the United States Supreme Court. John served as a trial judge on the Circuit Court of South Carolina for almost ten years beginning July 1, 2000. On February 3, 2010, Judge Few became the Chief Judge of the South Carolina Court of Appeals.
John is a frequent public speaker. In 1996, he gave a speech entitled "Citizen Participation in the Legal System," for which he was awarded first place in the American Bar Association's nationwide Edward R. Finch Law Day speech contest. Since then he has given numerous speeches to bar associations and civic groups throughout the country. In December 2012, he delivered the commencement speech, entitled "What it Means to be a Lawyer," to the graduates of the Charleston School of Law. His most frequent speech is entitled "The Courage of a Lawyer," which he has delivered to lawyers' groups in South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Arizona, and California. John wrote an article based on the speech that appeared under the same name in the Winter 2013 edition of the ABA's "Litigation" journal.
John has also been active in teaching law. He served on the faculty at the National Judicial College in Reno, Nevada, from 2005 to 2009. He was an Adjunct Professor of Law and later a Distinguished Visiting Professor at the Charleston School of Law from 2008 to 2012. John now teaches at the University of South Carolina School of Law. He has also given or moderated over one hundred and twenty-five continuing legal education seminars in South Carolina and several other states.
John is a Fellow in Liberty Fellowship. He completed the Diversity Leaders Initiative through The Riley Institute at Furman University in 2010. In December 2012, the Charleston School of Law awarded him the degree Doctor of Laws, honoris causa.
John's daughter Reed is a 2012 graduate of Duke University and a consultant with Simon-Kucher & Partners in Boston. His daughter Anna is a junior in nursing at Clemson University. His son Cannon attends high school. John is the son of J. Kendall Few of Greenville, and Belva Beasley Few of Greenwood.
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