Charleston County Bar Association gives Petigru Award to retired judge Richard Fields

Judge Richard Fields

A retired Charleston judge, who was the first black attorney to open a law firm in Charleston since Reconstruction, was honored by the Charleston County Bar Association this week.

During a ceremony Thursday night, the association presented the James Louis Petigru Award to Richard E. Fields.

“I am humbled that 20 years after my retirement there are still members of the Bar who think that I added something to the courts of justice in their community,” Fields said in a press release.

Fields served as a municipal judge for the city of Charleston, a Family Court judge and as a circuit judge. He retired in 1992.

He currently works with the Center for Heirs Property.

“Judge Fields is a man committed to the practice of law and of service to his community,” said Lad Howell, president of the Charleston County Bar Association.

The award is the highest honor that can be given by the association, and is not an annual award. Fields is the third to ever receive the award.