Senate confirms Professor Keckler's appointment to Legal Services Board
March 26, 2010
Professor Charles Keckler's nomination by President Obama to serve on the Board of Directors of the Legal Services Corporation was confirmed by the U.S. Senate. Keckler said he is "honored to be appointed. It's a way for me to continue to participate in public service while still continuing with my current work."
Before joining Penn State Law as a visiting professor teaching Civil Procedure and Evidence, Keckler was a deputy assistant secretary for policy at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. He worked on regulatory matters and on improving federal human services programs for a variety of disadvantaged populations. In his role there, Keckler oversaw networks of grantees providing services especially to children and families. His current research looks at the civil litigation system and its effectiveness and efficiency. Keckler believes that this combination of expertise will provide ample opportunities to find areas where he can contribute in a meaningful way as a board member. He adds that "I'm also aware of my role as, in part, a representative of the legal profession and academy and I will look for ways to incorporate the views of my colleagues into my service as well."
Legal Services Corporation (LSC) is the single largest provider of civil legal aid for the poor in the nation. Established by Congress in 1974, the organization is overseen by an eleven member, non-partisan board of directors. The board provides input into LSC operating issues, budget requests, and helps the staff to develop new programs and new ways of delivering legal services. "I'm interested in hearing the experiences of grantees," Keckler said. He emphasized that he would like to help find ways to make the nonprofit sector more efficient and encourage more private/public partnerships. LSC board members serve three-year terms but are required to stay on beyond that often until a replacement is found.