2020 National Conference for Lawyer Assistance Programs

Call for Program & Speaker Proposals

The ABA Commission on Lawyer Assistance Programs is soliciting program/topic and speaker proposals for its 2020 National Conference for Lawyer Assistance Programs to be held October 27-29, 2020, in Springfield, Massachusetts at the Tower Square Hotel.

Submissions: Prospective speakers are invited to submit a proposal to be considered for one of our Conference sessions. Most sessions will be 75 minutes long. Sessions cover a wide-range of topics related to the mental health and well-being of the legal profession.

Topics: Most Conference attendees are staff or volunteer professionals of state, local or international lawyer assistance programs—lawyers, clinicians, treatment providers, judges, law school deans or professional services administrators, law students, regulators, and representatives of legal employers. Prior Conference participants have expressed interest in the following topics:


  • Basic skills for treating Alcohol Use Disorders, Substance Use Disorders and Process Addictions.
  • Screening, Evaluation, Diagnosis and Referral to Appropriate Level of Care: How to Triage Individuals in Crisis
    • Co-Occurring Disorders/Dual Diagnosis
    • Evaluation Using the American Society of Addiction Medicine Criteria for Safety Sensitive Professions
    • Medication Assisted Treatment, Controversies and Realities
  • Lawyers Assistance Programs; Nuts and Bolts of How LAPs Do What We Do
    • Organization
    • Marketing, Outreach and Communications
    • Designing and Running Volunteer Programs
    • Governing Law
    • Administration
    • Clinical Outreach
    • Coordination with Community Support Groups
  • Relationship between Lawyer Assistance Programs and Regulatory Entities: How Can We Effectively Help Those Who Can Heal and Identify Those Who Cannot


  • Aging Lawyers & Cognitive Decline
  • Impacts of Implementation of the ABA Well-Being Pledge For Legal Employers
  • Lawyer Well-Being
    • Individual & Institutional/ Cultural
    • Building Resilience (for Lawyers and LAP staff and volunteers)
    • Lawyer Well-being Committees
  • Best Practices & Protocols: When & How to Integrate? Differing Perspectives.

This list of topics intended as guidance, not to be exhaustive. Prospective speakers are encouraged to submit proposals on any topics that might prove interesting to conference attendees. If you have an idea that may not be captured by the suggested topics above, please do not be deterred and tell us about it!

Submit Proposal

Basic Criteria: The Conference Planning Committee will only review proposals that meet the following minimum requirements:

  • All sections of the application are complete.
  • The proposal clearly identifies all presenters or speakers, including the moderator of a program.
  • The topic is relevant to lawyers, judges, law students, other legal professionals and the clinicians who work with them.
  • Presenters use their expertise to promote, guide and elicit discussion and problem-solving, rather than simply talking at the audience.
  • The program/presentation must include substantive course materials.

Other relevant factors for selection include:

  • Presentations embrace the concept of diversity and inclusion and offer unique educational experiences. The proposal should clearly articulate a diverse range of voices, perspectives, and content to find wide support.
  • The level of experience and knowledge of prospective speakers on the proposed subject matter
  • Whether programs meet qualifications for Continuing Legal Education (CLE) credit or Ethics credit or Continuing Education Units (CEU).
    • To qualify for CLE and Ethics credit baseline requirements include that the presentation deal with matters directly related to the practice of law, professional responsibility, or the ethical obligations of attorneys; and includes at least one attorney actively participating in the presentation either as speaker or moderator.
    • CoLAP is an NAADC Approved Education Provider. CEUs for clinicians will be available.
  • The format and delivery method of the program should allow the audience to achieve the stated learning objectives.
  • Proposed plan to encourage audience engagement
  • The presentation is not to be used to market products or services; and is free from commercial bias.
  • The degree of novelty of the presentation proposal (i.e. whether similar presentations have been made within the last three years).
  • The creativity, and authenticity of the presentation design

Benefits of Presenting:

  • Speakers will receive complimentary conference registration which does not include paid events or meals.
  • Promotion of speaker’s name and credentials on CoLAP’s Conference website, in our conference app, and in all electronic and print marketing materials, where appropriate.
  • Recognition of speaker’s expertise by colleagues and other professionals.
  • Networking opportunities.

Responsibility of Speakers/Presenters/Moderators:

  • Responsible for scheduling travel and all hotel reservations.
  • All travel, lodging and per diem costs associated with attending the Conference are the responsibility of the individual. CoLAP is unable to reimburse speakers/presenters/moderators for any travel, hotel or per diem expenses.
  • Submit a short biography, photo and speaker release.
  • Submit substantive program materials.
  • Participate in 2-3 program planning calls.
  • Moderators and speakers are expected to show up 10 minutes prior to their scheduled program start time for set-up and any prep.
  • Speakers/Presenters should not apply or submit a proposal if they are unable to attend due to the financial responsibility.
  • CoLAP will not provide speaking fees or honoraria to any speaker/presenter/moderator presenting at the Conference.

Note: Applicants will be notified of the Committee’s selection or non-selection. Program sessions will be scheduled on any of the conference dates and times at the discretion of the Conference Planning Committee.

Please be sure to click Submit at the bottom of the proposal form to send electronically, or save the form as a PDF and email it to Sharon O'Connell  to be received no later than Friday, January 31, 2020.

Thank you.

Tish Vincent, Chair, 2020 National Conference Planning Committee
Anna Levine, Vice-Chair, 2020 National Conference Planning Committee