A couple of weeks after starting law school, I happened upon a sign-up sheet in the career-services office. The state bar was seeking law-student liaisons to various bar entities. Thinking it sounded like a good way to learn more about my new chosen profession, I signed up to be a liaison to the Young Lawyers Division (YLD). Little did I know that this single act would lead to years of bar involvement at the state and national levels, which had a profound impact on my professional development as a lawyer.
When I tell people that I have grown as a lawyer as a result of bar involvement, they generally assume I mean that I have benefitted from being an active consumer of bar publications and continuing-legal-education programs. To be sure, those member benefits have helped me stay informed about changes in the law. But, bar involvement has also helped me develop in countless other ways.