The Women’s Law Caucus of the Penn State Dickinson School of Law will recognize Carol L. Van Horn as the 16th recipient of the Sylvia H. Rambo Award at a ceremony on Feb. 25, in Lewis Katz Hall, in Carlisle, Pa. Van Horn, the first woman elected to the Court of Common Pleas of the 39th Judicial District of Pennsylvania, will receive the Rambo Award in recognition of her exemplary contributions to the legal profession and to society as a whole.
The event begins at 6 p.m. and attendance is by invitation only.
The Rambo Award was introduced in 1994 by the Women’s Law Caucus to honor its first recipient, Sylvia H. Rambo, a 1962 graduate of the law school and the first woman to serve as chief judge of the United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania, where she continues to serve.
"Judge Rambo's commitment to the profession both as a lawyer and a jurist is an inspiration to all women that success is possible," said Van Horn. "I am extremely humbled to receive this award given in her honor and to know that 23 attorneys and Senior Judge John W. Keller, who has always believed in me since the day he hired me as his law clerk, deemed me worthy of nomination."
Van Horn graduated magna cum laude from Juniata College in 1979 and received her law degree from The Dickinson School of Law in 1982. From 1981 to 1984, she clerked for John W. Keller of the Franklin County Court of Common Pleas, and from 1984 to 1988, she practiced law with Maxwell, Maxwell, Dick & Walsh in Waynesboro, Pa. She then joined Martha B. Walker and Associates, P.C., in Chambersburg, Pa., later becoming a named partner of Walker, Van Horn & MacBride, a position she held until elected to the bench in 2000.
During her 16 years in private practice, she regularly handled pro bono matters for victims of abuse. In addition to her accomplishments as a lawyer and jurist, Van Horn is actively involved in a range of community organizations, including Women in Need, the Chambersburg Rotary Club, the Chambersburg YMCA Board of Directors, the Chambersburg Chamber of Commerce Board, the United Way of Franklin County, and the Frances Leiter Center for children's counseling.
Van Horn also has been recognized for her outstanding service with awards that include the Chambersburg YMCA Lifetime Achievement Award, the Statewide Adoption and Permanency Network County Collaborative Award, the Chambersburg Chamber of Commerce Athena Award, and the Women on the Move for the Tri-State Area Award.
In 2009, Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell appointed Van Horn to the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Committee. Additionally, she is a member of the executive committee of the Juvenile Court Section of the Pennsylvania State Trial Judges, a member of the State Roundtable Dependency Benchbook committee, and a member of the Franklin County Bar Association executive committee.