August 21, 2019 Message from the Chair

Farewell, and Keep Up the Great Work!

By William B. Baker

Welcome to the fourth and final issue this bar year of our flagship publication—The SciTech Lawyer.

Please take the opportunity to join your SciTech colleagues in San Francisco this August 8 and 9 as we gather in conjunction with the ABA’s annual meeting. This is an important meeting in a great city, so well worth the trip.

This issue’s theme is the circular economy. Pooja Nair and Jessica Kraus address U.S. issues ranging from redistributing food to prevent waste to initiatives (and pushbacks) to reduce or eliminate single-use plastic straws. Sarah McMillan discusses the European Union’s “Circular Economy Action Plan.” And be sure to read Bob Brammer and Preetha Chakrabarti’s discussion of the important work being done by the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures to help public companies address climate change in their securities filings. Last fall the ABA Board of Governors approved a request by SciTech to be a supporting organization of that initiative.

Rounding out the issue is an article by Lorelie Masters, Walter Andrews, and Paul Moura that builds on our Section’s work on Smart Cities and the Internet of Things by addressing the impact that autonomous vehicles will have on automobile insurance.

This issue also presents the slate of candidates from your Nominating Committee. Their skills and experience should maintain SciTech’s leadership role in science and technology law for years to come.

As you undoubtedly have heard, the ABA is implementing a new membership model designed to sustain the organization for years to come. Your SciTech staff and leadership have been working to make SciTech’s website a more inviting and useful repository of information and updates, and to identify new opportunities now available to the Section. I invite you to check it out and feel free to suggest ways in which it might be improved.

Finally, a personal note. A year as Section Chair reminds me yet again that Ringo Starr was right when he sang, in the guise of Billy Shears, “I get by with a little help from my friends.” I want to express my appreciation for my fellow officers Julie Fleming, Katherine Lewis, Ericka Watson, and Garth Jacobson for their inestimable assistance and counsel, and to my predecessor David Bodenheimer for setting a great example. Bonnie Fought and Richard Field, our Delegates to the ABA House of Delegates, give the Section a team second to none. Last but by no means least, I give a very special thank you to our superb Chicago staff of Caryn Cross Hawk and Barbara Mitchell, without whom nothing would get done.

And thanks to all our Section members for your hard work in shaping technology law for years to come. 

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By William B. Baker