Anne Ellefson Receives 2010 Tommy Thomason Award

October 27, 2010

Greenville County Bar honors professional, civic and community lawyer  

GREENVILLE, SC – October 27, 2010 – The Greenville County Bar presented the coveted Tommy Thomason Award to Anne Southerland Ellefson, Managing Director, Haynsworth Sinker Boyd, P.A., on Tuesday, October 26, at the award luncheon held at the Poinsett Club in Greenville.

This award was established in 1993 to honor a Greenville lawyer who best exemplifies the outstanding qualities of the late B. O. “Tommy” Thomason, a past president of the Greenville County Bar, a former member of the SC House of Representatives and special circuit judge for General Sessions Court, and also a solicitor for the 13th Judicial Circuit. These qualities include integrity, compassion, fairness, dedication to community, love of the practice of law, and pursuit of the practice as a service to people, among other attributes.

Jack D. Griffeth, Esq., of Collins & Lacy, P.C., presented the award to Ellefson on behalf of the Greenville County Bar Association. Griffeth, the 2008 recipient of the Thomason Award, said, “Anne Ellefson exemplifies the true goodness of Tommy Thomason.  She is extraordinarily accomplished as her meaty bio indicates, and manages to give generously of herself to the community, alongside the demands of her career and family.  Anne juggles tasks and responsibilities of a magnitude that would stump others, all the while being present when she is with you in a way that does not belie her busy schedule or anything other than her enjoyment at being with you.”

Married to Ted Ellefson, and the mother of twin girls, Rebecca and Anne Cooper, and Theodore “Todd” Ellefson has been practicing law since 1979.  A real estate lawyer, she was elected to serve as the managing director of Haynsworth Sinkler Boyd in 2008.  She is the first female to head a SC-based law firm with over 100 attorneys in a 350-employee organization.  She is also the 15th recipient of the Tommy Thomason Award and the first female recipient.

Griffeth said, “Anne handles difficult topics with diplomacy and humor, bringing to mind the adage from Mark Twain:

Humor is the great thing, the saving thing. The minute it crops up, all our irritations and resentments slip away and a sunny spirit takes their place.

– Mark Twain  (1835 – 1910)

Anne is filled with grace, even under fire. Anne is able to deal with the most difficult folks… with kindness, understanding and firmness her job as managing director requires.  She has no trouble saying what needs to be said, she just says it so gently, in a self – effacing and thoroughly graceful way.”

Currently, Ellefson, a graduate of USC and the USC School of Law, is the only representative from the practicing bar serving on the ten-member Search Committee for the new Dean of the USC School of Law.  She also serves as chair of the SC Bar’s House of Delegates and serves on the Bar’s Board of Governors.  In addition, she is a former president of the SC Bar Foundation. She is a member of the of the American College of Real Estate Lawyers and American College of Mortgage Attorneys; Ellefson was elected a Fellow of the American Bar Association Foundation in 2008.

She serves on the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity, a national organization, and is a mentor to young associates, both male and female, in numerous professions.

Ellefson is listed in The Best Lawyers in America® – Real Estate Law, South Carolina Super Lawyers™ magazine for Real Estate, and is also recognized in Chambers USA. The Firm and Ellefson were profiled in the August 2009 edition of Greenville Magazine as “South Carolina’s Leading Lawyers for Business” courtesy of Chambers and Partners.

She was appointed by the Greenville City Council to serve on the Board of the South Carolina Technology and Aviation Center, the former Donaldson Development Commission.  She is also an elected trustee of the ETV Endowment of South Carolina.

The Greenville resident received the University of South Carolina School of Law Alumni Foundation’s “Compleat Lawyer Gold Award” in 2008, in recognition of her outstanding contributions to the legal community. She is a former chairman of the Greater Greenville Chamber of Commerce and former president of the Junior League of Greenville.  A graduate of the Leadership Greenville Class XVI . Ellefson also served on the South Carolina Chamber of Commerce Excellence in Education Council (former chair, 2007-2008), and the South Carolina Chamber of Commerce (board of directors 2005-2009; executive committee 2007-2008).


About the 2010 Tommy Thomason Award

Please visit for additional information and see the “President’s Article” by Christine Gantt-Sorenson.


About Haynsworth Sinkler Boyd, P.A.

Haynsworth Sinkler Boyd, P.A. provides business, litigation and financial legal services, and governmental relations to national and international clients. With a history dating back to 1887, it is one of the largest law firms in the Carolinas with 135 attorneys.  The Firm has offices in Charleston, Columbia, Florence, Greenville, and Myrtle Beach SC, and Washington, DC.  For more information, visit