by Gregory L. Pemberton, Ice Miller, Indianapolis, Indiana
Your officers of the Health Law Section attended the Section Officers Conference event last month. Much was shared and celebrated about what is good and positive about the work of the Sections, Divisions, and Forums within the ABA. There was inspiration, aspiration, and perspiration in attendance. Well, maybe no sweat really but the word worked in the series. Yours truly came away with two items I think you might find interesting.
Not surprisingly, the ABA is doing a number of things to respond to the suffering and disruption in the aftermath of the hurricanes that have hit the Gulf Coast. A Special Task Force has been created, chaired by former ABA President Lee Cooper. Our own Howard Wall, former Health Law Chair is part of that group. Many other talented volunteers are playing important roles in this work. A website has been posted as a resource for both the public and the Bar. That address is http://www.abanet.org/katrina/. I suggest that you surf that location and see all that is available and underway. It is helpful to see and read all the challenges and opportunities identified. And I think you will feel good about being a part of our organization.
The second message is one from our current President Mike Greco. Mike is a passionate lawyer with a refreshing view of what is needed in the profession. One of his main initiatives involves a return to public service through pro-bono legal work. He uses the word “Renaissance” to describe and name this effort. There is a website for this purpose too. It is http://www.abanet.org/renaissance/. Mike is calling on all of our lawyer members to make pro-bono representation of clients unable to afford counsel a high priority. He is asking law firms to give credit to its lawyers for the time spent in these cases and matters. He advocates that this is not only the right thing for our profession but will cause many more lawyers to be proud of what we do everyday. He boldly predicts that firms will see higher morale and lower turnover as a result. Hence the title, “Renaissance.”
Take a moment out of your otherwise busy day or evening and consider these opportunities. The ABA is poised to contribute and to motivate. That strikes your humble chair as the right message both inside and outside the Bar. As the public eye remains on the new term of the US Supreme Court and on its newest member and newest nominee, let’s take a chance and invest ourselves and our time in helping others in need. It starts with “the man (or woman) in the mirror.” Take care.