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December 07, 2022

CoLAP Committees


CoLAP recognizes the contributions of others through a series of awards, such as those that honor LAP volunteers and employees, judges, bar directors and law school initiatives. Visit the Awards page.

2017-18 Awards Committee roster coming soon.

Collaborations with State LAPs

To maintain strong, supportive and collaborative relationships between the ABA Commission on Lawyer Assistance Programs (CoLAP) and the individual state judges and lawyers assistance programs that seek to address areas of common concern on a national and state level.

2017-18 Collaborations with State LAPs Committee roster coming soon.


We will define, share and explain simple, memorable, and accessible messages to the legal community. The Communications Committee will strengthen awareness of the ABA Commission on Lawyer Assistance Programs concerning alcoholism, chemical dependencies, behavioral addictions, stress, depression, and other cognitive and emotional health issues. The committee will define target audiences, explore marketing ideas accordingly, and will periodically propose suggestions to the Commission and the LAPs.

2017-18 Communications Committee roster coming soon.

Diversity/Underserved Populations

Develop and/or enhance cooperative working relationships with national, state and local minority organizations and introduce them to the available help. Increase the awareness of the LAPs as to the special needs of minorities as related to addictions and mental illness. Continue outreach to minorities as provided for in the Letter of Agreement between ABA and NBA. Access diversity-related articles and resources.


To develop educational programming, including webinars, relating to recognizing and addressing lawyer impairment issues. View upcoming events and access a list of recorded programs.


Explore new and existing revenue opportunities.

2017-18 Funding Committee roster coming soon.

Judicial Assistance Initiative

Further develop a comprehensive national program that will effectively assist judges who may be depressed, chemically dependent, or have other mental health conditions that impair judicial performance. Access our Resources for Judges page.

2017-18 Judicial Assistance Initiative Committee roster coming soon.

LAP Evaluations

The Commission is available to conduct a review of lawyer assistance programs (LAPs) already in operation. A team consisting of a LAP volunteer and director is assembled by the Commission Chair. This team reviews the job responsibilities of the staff, the financial operation, services provided, volunteer involvement, and cooperative measures between the LAP and bar association. Following the evaluation, the Commission provides a written report with recommendations for expanding and/or improving the reviewed program. The Commission does not charge a fee for this service other than reimbursement of the expenses for the two reviewers. For further information or to schedule an evaluation, please email Sharon O'Connell, or reach her by phone at 312/988-5717.

2017-18 Evaluations Committee roster coming soon.

Law School Assistance

Develop resources and identify best practices to aid LAPs and law schools in improving law student mental health and wellness. Recognize individuals, law schools, and organizations that have programs designed to assist students with addiction and other mental health problems. Continue to coordinate efforts with the National Association of Bar Examiners, ABA Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar Section, ABA Law Student Division, and Association of American Law Schools. Access our Resources for Law Students page.

2017-18 Law School Assistance Committee roster coming soon.

Life Balance

Outreach to fellow directors in a time of threat to their sobriety or mental, emotional health, seals the collegial bond so important to our health and the strength of the work we do. 

2017-18 Life Balance Committee roster coming soon.

National Conference Planning

The annual National Conference for Lawyer Assistance Programs brings together lawyer assistance program directors and staff, law school administrators, judges, disciplinary staff, bar leaders and law firm managers for educational sessions and networking opportunities. Learn more about the upcoming conference and access conference archives.

2017-18 National Conference Planning Committee roster coming soon.


Address policy issues; explore other issues that can assist LAPs via national policy statements from the ABA. View policies and policy-related developments.

2017-18 Policy Committee roster coming soon.


Aid the Commission in research related activities in order to provide current data to programs and to collaborate with ongoing research efforts in the legal field. Access our Research page.

2017-18 Research Committee roster coming soon.

Senior Lawyers

Aid lawyer assistance programs (LAPs) in preparing to meet the increasing need for services to senior members of the profession to enhance their continued careers and quality of life. Access our Senior Lawyer Resources page.

2017-18 Senior Lawyers Committee roster coming soon.