PERSPECTIVES

FROM THE CHAIR OF THE LAW PRACTICE MANAGEMENT SECTION

Spring is a time of renewal and rebirth , and it’s also the peak of the ABA bar year. These are interesting times for ABA section chairs, as we find ourselves (like most professional membership organizations) dealing with day-to-day budget, services and staff issues in the midst of a difficult national economy. However, because we recognized the need to make tough decisions and implement change early in the downturn, the LPM Section hits the peak of this bar year with great excitement.

LPM continues to provide powerful member benefits, including this magazine in print and electronic formats and the outstanding monthly Law Practice Today webzine. In addition, our book publishing and educational programs have not skipped a beat. LPM’s rotating biannual conferences, the ABA Women Rainmakers Mid-Career Workshop (this October in Washington, D.C.) and the ABA Law Firm -Marketing Strategies Conference (up again in November 2011), are yet more examples of growth in a time of cutbacks.

Plus, for nearly a quarter century, early spring means it’s ABA TECHSHOW® time. Unlike other legal technology conferences that are for-profit businesses, the bulk of planning and implementation is undertaken by a dedicated group of LPM members. This year the ABA TECHSHOW Planning Board was led by Debbie Foster and Paul Unger. They, along with LPM staff and a huge team of volunteers, have poured their hearts and souls into providing attendees with the best education on the latest in legal technology. We hope you enjoy the 24th rendition of the conference, and will look forward to our silver anniversary year in 2011, too.

Renewal in Las Vegas. What happens when you combine CLE, business meetings and networking events at the five-star Palazzo in Las Vegas? If I have my way, it will result in a spring weekend that makes the movie The Hangover look like child’s play. That may be wishful thinking on my part (as I do believe in the “what happens in Vegas” mantra), but the reality is this year’s LPM Spring Meeting is the most important of the Section year. It will be our first in-person planning meeting since the fall, and it is also when much of the groundwork will be set for the following year. If you have an interest in some strong CLE programming, or want to learn more about the many opportunities to engage in our Section, meet us in Vegas, April 28-May 1. Registration information is available at www.lawpractice.org/springmeeting.

New director. Continuing with the theme of renewal, LPM welcomes Pamela McDevitt on board as our new Section Director. She comes to the ABA after four years as Director of Law Practice Management for the New York State Bar Association. With the guidance of H. Maria Enright, Director of the ABA Professional Services Division, and LPM Chair-Elect Andrea Hartley, we had wonderful candidates from which to choose. It was the experience, energy and passion that Pamela brought to the interview process that made her stand out as the right person to lead LPM staff moving forward. We are excited about the future and hope you continue to be a part of it.

About the Author

Micah Buchdahl , Chair of the ABA Law Practice Management Section, is an attorney and President of HTMLawyers, dedicated to guiding law firms through business development strategies and implementation.

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