Susannah Prucka ’03
Photography by Lance Holt
Distinguished Young Alumna
Susannah Prucka ’03 is an assistant attorney general for the state of Maryland, and is known not only for her ambition, leadership and knowledge of the law, but also for bringing people together and making them feel comfortable. She has even organized a lunch group in her office that quickly became the “place to be” at noon.
She is also admired for the tremendous amount of work she does in her community, helping many through the Alpha Xi Delta Fraternity for Women, the Junior League of Baltimore, and the Baltimore Animal Rescue Shelter - where she goes out of her way for citizens of the four-legged kind. She was also instrumental in implementing the Kids in the Kitchen program to help combat childhood obesity in the Baltimore community.
Respect for Susannah’s integrity and energy is unbounded. While she doesn’t always agree with her colleagues on political matters, she shares a commitment to justice that is deep and enduring.
While on a tour of the University of Maryland Law School, a professor introduced herself to Susannah. Imagine the professor’s surprise to learn that Susannah was from her home state of Texas and a graduate of Southwestern - the alma mater of the professor’s grandfather, mother, father, nephew and niece, with whom Susannah is also a sorority sister. That professor says that chance encounter was the beginning of a very nice friendship with Susannah and that the two share more than just an appreciation for great country music and good horses!
She notes that Susannah is kind and knows how to host a social event, but at the same time blunt about what is on her mind and honest about what she believes to be true. This combination, she says, makes Susannah a force to be reckoned with … much like other powerful Texas women she has known and loved.
On the Southwestern campus, Susannah was always the soccer team’s conscience and was mature enough even then to see that individual actions reflected the team as a whole. Her former coach says she always gave her best, regardless of the situation.
From the soccer team to the law office, Susannah’s drive to always be better and her willingness to put in the time and effort to achieve results is astounding.
As an appellate advocate for the state of Maryland, she more than lives up to the expectation that she will bring her knowledge of the law to the court and persuade the judge on how the law should be applied in each situation.
The Maryland Court of Appeals judge who once hired Susannah as a law clerk says he appreciates that she speaks her mind and that her clear, concise attention to detail makes working with Susannah a true collaborative effort. He also says that Susannah is going places and that he expects big things from her.
According to one of Susannah’s friends, her academic, service and professional resumes rival even some of the most respected and revered public figures. Fellow alumni have said that even as a student, Susannah spoke in class with sophisticated logic backed by intelligent forethought, and her grades clearly reflected her efforts. That sophistication and forethought is even more evident today.
For friends and family alike, Susannah represents the image of a great leader as well as the prototype of a philanthropist. She is a committed young professional and her fellow alumni respect her dedication and conviction in all that she does. But, their memories still include images of her running up and down the Southwestern soccer fields, making a motion at a Student Congress meeting, and joining fellow College Republicans at campus events.
For all of her professional accomplishments as well as for her work to make a better world; for being strong in her convictions and determined in all that she sets her mind to; and for going out of her way for others and bringing people together, The Association of Southwestern University Alumni presented to Susannah Prucka the Distinguished Young Alumna Award for 2012.