We sometimes experience sadness as the sun sets on a beautiful day, but we are relieved to know it will rise again in the morning. Writing this is bittersweet because it is my last Officially Speaking column as the chair of the Law Student Division.
However, I will move on with a sense of excitement knowing the Division is stronger than ever, speaking loudly and standing boldly on behalf of law students nationwide. It has been an amazing year working with an all-star cast of individuals. We could not have accomplished so many goals without the Division officers and delegates Lauren Acquaviva, Michelle Philo, Brandon Smith, Will Binkley, Matthew Dorothy, Cleveland Patterson, and Shawn Gozarkhah. To them I say thank you.
To the Governors, Lt. Governors, and Liaisons—past and present—I owe my gratitude as well. An organization is only as strong as the people on the front lines who adopted our goals with zeal and determination. Your hard work did not go unnoticed. To the many friends of our Division and the amazing staff in Chicago, thank you for your unwavering support and belief in our team. Lastly, to the many members of this Division, you voiced your expectations and your determination not to settle for mediocrity. You gave the utmost trust to our team and it is our hope that we did not let you down.
This year we faced many challenges, expected and unexpected. Through it all, we were able to advocate aggressively while maintaining our standard of professionalism. Having met so many law students as I traveled this nation, I have been blessed with a futuristic view of the next brilliant minds to lead the legal arena. This year has brought open arms and warm hearts from New York to Arizona and from Washington State to Washington, D.C. I have no doubt that under your guidance the true essence of equality and the spirit of lady justice will ring loud in courtrooms and other tribunals wherever it is so demanded and deserved.
Congratulations to all who are graduating. You are crossing over into the land of opportunity where everyone can find a place of significance and make a difference. Now is the time to be the change that you desire to see. To everyone else, I implore you to keep the focus, stay involved, and refuse to be placed on the back burner. You are the future and the future is tomorrow. We are out of time for procrastination and delay. These United States of America need us and we will take our seat at the table to ensure, protect, and allow for life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. We will not accept anything other than the truths that all men are created equal and endowed by our creator with certain unalienable rights.
I look forward to seeing each of you at the 2012 ABA Annual Meeting in Chicago. There we will work, strategize, network, and have fun before I strike the gavel for the last time at the Division’s Assembly. I encourage you to plan now for this is one meeting you will not want to miss. It has been the honor of my life to lead this Division. Together we made history, revitalized the entire Division, established a higher level of acknowledgment, and reaffirmed our commitment to diversity. I will miss you all. May God bless the ABA Law Student Division and may God bless America.