In 1996, McElroy joined the Southern Poverty Law Center's "board of directors. Four years later, he assisted the Center in Keenan vs. Aryan Nations in Idaho, which resulted in a $6.3 million judgment against the Aryan Nations and its founder, Richard Butler. In 2003, he was elected board chairman.
"In addition to his work for the Center, McElroy has spent more than 25 years taking on civil rights cases in San Diego.
"In 2000, the University of San Diego law school graduate successfully represented a black Camp Pendleton Marine brutally beaten and left a quadriplegic by white supremacists. The case ended in a $1.2 million settlement against some defendants and a $9 million verdict against the main perpetrator.
"McElroy has also worked with Planned Parenthood and other family planning clinics to protect patients, staff and doctors from violence. In 1994, Lt. Governor Leo McCarthy appointed McElroy to the State Commission on the Prevention of Hate Violence. He has testified before various congressional committees on hate crimes legislation, taught courses to lawyers on how to prosecute civil hate crimes cases and has published on the collection of judgments in civil rights cases...
"McElroy has received many awards for his work. In 1994, the Anti-Defamation League recognized his pro bono work by giving him its National Civil Rights Achievement Award. In 1995, he received the Margaret Sanger Award given by Planned Parenthood for his work on behalf of women's rights.
"Womancare Health Center recognized McElroy in 1996 for "outstanding work in protecting the rights of women," and in 2004, the San Diego County Bar Association recognized McElroy as its Outstanding Attorney of the Year." 
Resources and articles
- James McElroy, Southern Poverty Law Center, accessed November 10, 2007.