Summer 2009ABA Website | Specialization Homepage
Newsletter One
Certification is one way to achieve individual recognition, enhance self-esteem, and gain respect in the legal world. Certification enhances the credibility of the individual and the profession, as well as providing clients with confident representation!

Wheels of Change...

As a result of a discussion at the 2009 Roundtable meeting in Savannah, the Standing Committee for Legal Specialization has formed topical working groups. The groups will all be focusing on various aspects of Legal Specialization, all working towards a common goal - promoting the success and awareness of legal specialization. The groups breakdown into:

Logo Steering Committee
Members: Julia Orzeske, Holly Fox, Rhea Kirk, Twila Larkin and Wesley Avery

Technology Networking
Members: Lisa Tipton, Scott Bovitz, Dave Shearon, Marylin Batista, Denise Mullen

Members: Will Kohn, Dian Gilmore, Wynn Brown, Lisa Tipton, Wendy Weiss, Phyllis Culp

Judges as Certified Specialists
Gary McNeil, Mike Ferguson, Jim Carr, Emily Eschweiler

Emeritus Status
Will Kohn, Maureen Martin, Stafford Matthews, Dick Dombrow, Lori Barbee

If you'd be interested in contributing or joining any of these groups, please email Sara Pekar.


Florida News
The Florida Supreme Court today approved standards for adoption law and education law as the 23rd and 24th areas available to attorneys for Florida Bar board certification.

Attorneys may apply later this year for the two new certification areas on The Florida Bar Web site at




Adele I. Stone

Adele I. Stone of Atkinson, Diner, Stone, Mankuta & Ploucha, P.A. in Fort Lauderdale received the 2009 Justice Harry Lee Anstead Award for The Florida Bar Board Certified Lawyer of the Year.  She is the first woman to earn the award.
The Florida Bar Board of Legal Specialization and Education created the Anstead award in 2005 to recognize exemplary professionalism and excellence in the practice of law and character and commitment to The Florida Bar’s certification program.  The BLSE annually presents the award to a Florida board-certified lawyer or judge.  BLSE Chair Joni Armstrong Coffey of Miami presented this year's award June 29 at the BLSE’s annual-convention reception sponsored by Florida Lawyers Mutual Insurance Co.  

Coffey applauded Stone’s extensive involvement in ethics-related endeavors and organizations, and quoted her nominator as saying, “Adele exemplifies all that is good, decent and honorable in a lawyer.”
Stone is board certified in real estate law and is managing shareholder at Atkinson, Diner, Stone, Mankuta and Ploucha, P.A.  She currently chairs The Florida Bar Foundation.  She is an executive council member of the Bar’s Real Property Probate and Trust Law Section and co-chairs the section’s professionalism and ethics committee.  She is the 2009 recipient of the Russell E. Carlisle Advocacy Award, which recognizes an attorney whose career has exemplified a commitment to the poor and to public interest work.  Stone frequently lectures at ethics seminars for a variety of organizations, and has served on The Florida Bar’s Ethics Committee.  She has served as Broward County recruiting chair for Florida Attorneys Saving Homes project and chair of Legal Aid of Broward County.  She founded the Broward County Legal Aid Advisory Board.


please don't


For some time, TBLS has been aware that a significant number of potential applicants each year complete a portion of the online certification application form but do not submit it. In an effort to “capture” these prospects, the TBLS certification analysts e-mailed and called prospects who had completed a substantial portion of the application to offer encouragement and assistance. The contacts were made 2-3 weeks before the application deadline. Those contacted were quite appreciative and many completed and submitted their applications as a result. Additionally, our analysts were able to answer some questions to facilitate application submission for next year. However, at the end of the 2009 application filing period in May we still had 208 attorneys who did not complete and submit the online application.

TBLS has decided to survey these attorneys to try to identify the key factors in their decision to not submit and to find ways to encourage future participation. With the vast majority of applicants using the online application process, TBLS is able to maintain e-mail addresses for potential applicants and determine how much of the required information each has completed on their respective applications. TBLS wants to use this information to offer personalized assistance to the prospects and to thereby increase the number of applicants each year. We will be happy to share the results of the survey with our colleagues.

One Million Trees Project

The American Bar Association's Section of Environment, Energy and Resources (SEER) announces its "One Million Trees Project - Right Tree for the Right Place at the Right Time" nationwide public service project. We call on ABA members to contribute to the goal of planting one million trees across the United States in the next five years. Read more...
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Save the Date

for the 2010


Denver, CO

March 11-13

The Curtis Hotel

Testing Dates
 National Elder Law Foundation

The next Elder Law Certification
Examination is scheduled for October 2, 2009 and will be given in regional locations proctored at CELA attorney offices. Application Deadline: September 1, 2009


 American Board of Certification

American Board of Certification Announces Remaining 2009 Exam Dates and Locations

July 29th - Hilton Head, SC
Deadline: July 15th
ABI Southeast Bankruptcy Workshop, Westin Hilton Head Island Resort & Spa
August 6th - Hershey, PA
Deadline: July 23
ABI Mid-Atlantic Bankruptcy Workshop, Hotel Hershey

September 10th - Incline Village,NV
Deadline: August 27
ABI Southwest Bankruptcy Conference, Tahoe Resort, Spa & Casino

October 19th - Las Vegas, NV
Deadline: October 5th
National Conference of Bankruptcy Judges , Paris Las Vegas Hotel

November 12th - New York, NY
Deadline: October 29th
CLLA 89th New York Meeting
Sheraton New York Hotel & Towers

December 3rd - La Quinta, CA
Deadline: November 19th
ABI Winter Leadership Conference,
La Quinta Resort & Spa


 National College for DUI Defense, Inc.

DUI Defense Law Board Certification Examination January 16, 2010.
Deadline: August 31, 2009


It's Easy

being Green

Is your electric bill giving you the CHILLS? Check out these easy tips for helping you keep your "cool"!

Try putting adhesive, tinted window films on your windows. Films from companies like Panorama keep out solar heat and UV radiation while still letting in light (prices vary).

Plant a shade tree. Check Lowe's for advice on the best types of trees to plant for shade (hazelnut trees are a sure bet); and where to plant them for max shade in summer and sun in winter. Bonus: Trees eat up CO2.

Get window shades. Some, including Hunter Green, reduce the amount of cool air you lose through windows ($190/typical 60- by-42-inch shade).

Install awnings. Again, check Lowe's (or any home improvement store) for tons of styles, including metal or fabric; manual or motorized retractable; and window, door, or patio awnings (prices vary).

Energy Star - find federal tax rebates for window treatments.


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