James J. Sandman was appointed president of the Legal Services Corporation effective January 31, 2011, bringing more than three decades of legal experience to LSC. He was with Arnold & Porter LLP from 1977 to 2007 and served as the firm’s managing partner from 1995 to 2005. From 2007 to 2011, he was general counsel for the District of Columbia Public Schools.
Sandman was president of the District of Columbia Bar from 2006-2007 and served on the Bar’s Board of Governors from 2003-2008. He is currently the chair of the Bar’s Pro Bono Committee and co-chair of the District of Columbia Circuit Judicial Conference Committee on Pro Bono Legal Services, He is a member of the Pro Bono Institute’s Law Firm Pro Bono Project Advisory Committee. From 2007-2008, he served on the American Bar Association’s Standing Committee on Pro Bono and Public Service. He is a member of the U.S. Civil Rights Commission’s District of Columbia State Advisory Committee. He also is vice chairman of the Washington Performing Arts Society and on the boards of the Meyer Foundation, the Women’s Bar Association Foundation, and the DC Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy.
He previously served as chairman of the board of Whitman-Walker Health, and as a member of the boards of the Neighborhood Legal Services Program of the District of Columbia, the International Senior Lawyers Project, the NALP Foundation for Law Career Research and Education, Wilkes University, and the University of Pennsylvania Law School. He also has served on the scholarship selection committee of the Minority Corporate Counsel Association.
Sandman was named one of the “90 Greatest Washington Lawyers of the Last 30 Years” by the Legal Times in 2008. The University of Pennsylvania Law School has honored him with its Alumni Award of Merit and its Howard Lesnick Pro Bono Award. He has also received the Women’s Bar Association of the District of Columbia’s “Star of the Bar” Award, D.C. Law Students in Court’s Celebration of Service Award, and the Tahirih Justice Center’s Wings of Justice Award.
Sandman is a summa cum laude graduate of Boston College, where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa, and received his law degree cum laude from the University of Pennsylvania, where he served as executive editor of the law review and was elected to the Order of the Coif. He began his legal career as a law clerk to Judge Max Rosenn of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit.