The summer means that children are out of school, days become longer, and summer vacations become a reality. Throughout the year young lawyers have continued to make an impact on and change their communities while networking and having fun in the process.
Giving Back to the Community
On May 1, 2012, the Union County Bar Association (New Jersey) hosted a “Shop ‘Til You Drop—for the Community FoodBank of New Jersey!” Participating organizations received tickets to sell before the date of the event. The FoodBank kept 100% of the proceeds from ticket sales, while the participants received exclusive savings and a fun-filled day of shopping and events. The Community FoodBank of New Jersey is an organization fighting hunger and poverty by distributing food and grocery products, providing education and training, and implementing new programs to meet the needs of low-income people. Since its incorporation in 1982, the Community FoodBank has distributed almost 500 million pounds of food and groceries valued at over $1 billion.
On April 28, 2012, the Orange County Bar Association Young Lawyers Division (California) assisted The Community Action Partnership of Orange County at their food bank to help provide relief to those in need. Some 615,000 Orange County residents, many of them children, are at risk of hunger every month. Young lawyers spent a morning packing and assembling food items into boxes for delivery to hungry families in the community.
On April 21, 2012, the New Jersey State Bar Association Young Lawyers Division held two events to support the Division’s community service projects. The NJSBA YLD hosted a “Wills for Heroes” event for the Essex County Office of Emergency Management in West Orange where volunteers drafted wills and estate documents for first responders. Volunteers who stayed the entire day received CLE credit. In addition, the NJSBA YLD held its annual “Earth Day Tree Planting” at the Lafayette Street School in Newark where Newark Mayor Cory Booker was scheduled to be in attendance.
On March 31, 2012, the Wisconsin State Bar Young Lawyers Division held its Annual YLD Leadership Conference in Milwaukee, as well as Law Day activities. The Young Lawyers Division also partnered with the Family Resource Center of Sheboygan County to provide legal assistance to families in Sheboygan County. The Division organizes volunteer attorneys willing to provide a 15-minute consultation on a variety of topics. The center screens requests and makes referrals to the appropriate attorney and sets up the phone calls. In addition, the Division has assisted the center in purchasing legal reference materials and videos, which are used to provide legal education classes for parents.
Starting on March 13, 2012, the Colorado Bar Association Young Lawyers Division and the Colorado Bar Association, in an attempt to meet the needs of Colorado veterans and service members, hosted a pro-bono clinic called “Colorado Lawyers for Colorado Veterans.” This program provided free legal advice via clinics and pro-bono legal services to veterans who require further help. The Denver clinics will be held on the second Tuesday of the month.
In March 2012, members of the Palm Beach County Bar Association’s Young Lawyers Section (Florida) partnered with Habitat for Humanity of Palm Beach County to assist with the Kennedy Estates 27 home project in Jupiter, Florida. Approximately 40 members of the Young Lawyers Section spent the day working side by side with Habitat for Humanity homeowners. They painted, landscaped, loaded materials, and did site cleanup. Their efforts had a direct impact on the homeowners and a lasting impact on the Jupiter community. The Habitat for Humanity project was the second time the YLS members have assisted with building a house.
In February 2012, the Alexandria Bar Association Young Lawyers (Louisiana) participated in the “Cause We Care Fair,” an event designed to assist law enforcement by having children photographed and fingerprinted to create Amber Alert packets for parents.
On January 21, 2012, approximately 40 students, volunteers, and parents gathered at the Frank Murphy Hall of Justice in downtown Detroit to participate in a mock trial sponsored by the State Bar of Michigan Young Lawyers Section and the Wolverine Bar Association. The event was organized to benefit SKIP, a local nonprofit dedicated to working with children of incarcerated parents. With the assistance of their attorney-partners, SKIP students enthusiastically took the lead in the trial by playing roles as lawyers, judges, witnesses, and jury members.
On November 9, 2011 the Palm Beach County Bar Association’s Young Lawyers Section (Florida) helped serve food and served as dining companions as well as hosting legal seminars on such topics as landlord tenant, criminal law, family law, and bankruptcy law at Café Joshua. Café Joshua is a unique restaurant where homeless and formerly homeless families and individuals are the guests of honor—receiving a three-course meal specially prepared by Café Joshua culinary apprentices. Used as an incentive for participation, each day Café Joshua participants are able to make a reservation at the café and enjoy a nutritious lunch break. Community volunteers serve the meals and are also table companions, allowing guests to experience fellowship and conversation over a meal. This best practice model is helpful in restoring dignity and self-esteem to our community’s homeless, which is a foundation of their mission.
Member Outreach and Programming
On June 28, 2012, Boston Bar Association New Lawyers Section (Massachusetts) young lawyers, summer associates, and law students enjoyed “Justice is Sweet,” an evening of chocolate fondue, wine tasting, and live jazz to benefit the Boston Bar Foundation. This charitable event grows more popular each year, welcoming hundreds of enthusiastic guests to the Bar Association’s offices at 16 Beacon Street each June.
The South Dakota State Bar Association Annual Meeting took place in Rapid City from June 20–22, 2012. The Young Lawyers were busy making preparations for the Annual Meeting, which included organizing a mixer with the South Dakota Trial Lawyers Association, organizing a road race, holding a donation drive (this year to benefit CASAs—Court Appointed Special Advocates—across the state), and having their annual business meeting and elections.
On May 19, 2012, the Austin Young Lawyers Association (Texas) hosted “Retro Vegas,” a swanky night on the town full of casino gaming, live entertainment, and specialty cocktails (like the “Circus Circus” cotton candy martini). Everyone dressed up in their best Vegas glam and took part in a night of high style entertainment on the Cesar Chavez strip next to the Four Seasons resort. People also mixed and mingled with showgirls, hit the craps and roulette tables, then caught the hottest shows on the strip at the Casino Lounge Stage. And remember, what happens at Retro Vegas stays at Retro Vegas! All proceeds that were raised benefited the nonprofit endeavors of the Austin Young Lawyers Association Foundation.
From February 2–4, 2012, the San Francisco Bar Association, Barristers Club (California) sponsored the Institute for Transnational Arbitration’s Winter Forum. The Winter Forum includes a roundtable during which young lawyers from around the globe meet to discuss issues regarding international arbitration with well-known practitioners and professors.
On February 4, 2012, the Hartford County Bar Association (Connecticut) held its 2012 “Barristers’ Ball,” a midwinter evening of “award winning” cuisine and dancing at the historic Hartford Golf Club, one of the most prestigious and sought after venues in greater Hartford. A silent auction was also held with all proceeds to benefit the Hartford County Bar Foundation.
On January 29, 2012, the New Orleans Bar Association Young Lawyers Section (Louisiana) hosted the 2012 “Charity Pro-Bowl-O Tournament” to support The Pro Bono Project. The Pro Bono Project provides free, quality civil legal services to the poor of Orleans, Jefferson, St. Bernard, Plaquemines, St. Tammany, and Washington parishes. Prizes were awarded for highest individual and team scores as well as best team costume and tackiest pair of bowling shoes.
On January 20, 2012, the Kansas Bar Association Young Lawyers Section hosted a hockey social at a Topeka Roadrunner game. The event, which quickly sold out, was held in the rink level party zone, which provided a great view of the action. The networking opportunity was attended by lawyers, law students, and judges.
The Future of the Profession
On May 25, 2012, the Connecticut Bar Association Young Lawyers Section held its first annual golf outing. The YLS Golf Outing was a day of golf, fun, and socializing at Quarry Ridge Golf Course in Portland. All proceeds from the event benefited Waterbury’s Crosby High School Mock Trial team, which recently won the Connecticut High School Mock Trial Championship. The funds raised at this event were needed to help the Crosby Mock Trial Team achieve its goal of representing Connecticut in the upcoming National High School Mock Trial Championships that will be held in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
On March 29, 2012, the Hennepin County Bar Association New Lawyers Section (Minnesota) planned and presented one of the sessions at this year’s Legal Expo held in Brooklyn Center. The Legal Expo is an annual half-day program designed to educate and inspire teens about the law. In this session, attorneys put on a one-hour mock-trial, showing teens what happens in court and the roles of the judge, attorneys, witnesses, and the jury.
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To highlight the achievements and successes of your affiliate, please send updates of member service or public service projects and related pictures to BLaurence@LomurroLaw.com. We look forward to recognizing your projects in future editions of The Affiliate and may even use them to lay the foundation for national outreach!