The TIPS Meeting in Las Vegas, January 23–27, during the ABA 2019 Midyear Meeting, was a big success in a fabulous location at Caesars Palace. It is always a special event when TIPS’s meetings are based at the ABA headquarters hotel where all Association governance takes place and we are all under one roof—in this case, a very large roof that even included a faux-sky over the Forum Shops that changed throughout the day and night!
Many task force and standing committee meetings took place during the Midyear Meeting, and the TIPS Council met to conduct important Section governance work and nominate officers and TIPS representatives to the ABA House of Delegates for the 2019–2020 bar year. The following members were nominated in Las Vegas (with one exception*) and will be elected officially by TIPS members at the Section business meeting to be held during the ABA Annual Meeting in San Francisco, California, in August:
Chair-Elect (*elected last year as Vice-Chair for 2018–2019; will serve as Chair-Elect in 2019–2020 for a one-year term; then will automatically become Section Chair for 2020–2021): John C. McMeekin, II, Philadelphia, PA
Vice-Chair (one-year term): Gary L. Gassman, Chicago, IL
Secretary: Christopher Nolan, New York, NY
Finance Officer: Sam Poteet, Nashville, TN
Revenue Officer-Elect: Meade Mitchell, Ridgeland, MS
Diversity Officer: Marcy Greer, Austin, TX
Section Representative to the ABA House of Delegates: Holly Polglase, Boston, MA
Council Members, Class of 2022 (five to be elected, each to serve a three-year term):
David S. Becker, Chicago, IL
Christine S. Davis, Washington, DC
Lisa J. Dickinson, Spokane, WA
Floyd Holloway Jr., Chadds Ford, PA
Beth M. Kramer, Bethesda, MD
The TIPS Animal Law Committee and Law in Public Service Committee co-sponsored a TIPS Public Service Project at The Animal Foundation (TAF) in the Las Vegas Valley, the highest volume single-site animal shelter in the United States. TAF usually has 1,000 animals on-site (mostly dogs), and TIPS volunteers helped the animals and the shelter by bagging food, stuffing Kongs, making toys, socializing with the dogs, and generally having a great time.
The Leadership Academy 2018–2019 Class met at the Midyear Meeting and enjoyed dinner with the TIPS Section Council; heard from ABA President Bob Carlson, former ABA President Dennis Archer, and other leaders; and volunteered for the public service project at The Animal Foundation. Academy members also attended the TIPS Fellows Reception and the TIPS Networking Reception with the ABA Young Lawyers Division; participated in Caucus, a unique aspect of the Leadership Academy that encourages confidential deep discussion among the Class members about issues of importance to each Class, facilitated by a moderator; and made plans for their meetings during the 2019 TIPS Section Conference in May.
Marc Galanter, retired University of Wisconsin Law School professor, was honored at a TIPS reception with the prestigious Robert B. McKay Award, which recognizes law professors who show a commitment to advancing justice, scholarship, and the legal profession by contributing to the fields of tort, trial practice, or insurance law.
Other highlights of the Midyear Meeting of interest to TIPS members included the following:
- The Judicial Clerkship Program (JCP), a joint effort of the ABA Council for Diversity in the Educational Pipeline and the ABA Judicial Division, with generous in-kind support from LexisNexis, is a three-day program introducing diverse law students from around the country to judges and law clerks who interacted in structured and informal settings (see www.americanbar.org/groups/diversity/diversity_pipeline/projects_initiatives/judicial_clerkship_program/).
- The ABA Spirit of Excellence Awards Luncheon (see www.americanbar.org/news/abanews/aba-news-archives/2018/10/aba-announces-2019-spirit-of-excellence-award-recipients/), a luncheon honoring Mark D. Agrast, recipient of the ABA 2019 Robert F. Drinan Award for Distinguished Service.
- Presentation of the 2019 Stonewall Award to three longstanding LGBT activists (see www.americanbar.org/news/abanews/aba-news-archives/2018/10/aba-names-recipients-of-2019-stonewall-award-honoring-lgbt-advan/).
Several TIPsters represent the Section in the ABA House of Delegates (HOD), which met at the Midyear Meeting. HOD members considered important policy recommendations for the ABA and heard from the Hon. Paul L. Reiber, president of the Conference of Chief Justices, and from other leaders in the profession, while working through this important legal body to uphold and defend the Rule of Law.
Special thanks for coordinating the many TIPS events at the ABA Midyear Meeting go to TIPS Chair Roy Alan Cohen and our great TIPS staff led by Theresa Livingston, our wonderful sponsors, and the many Section members who escaped the harsh winter weather across the country to enjoy sunny spring-like days in Las Vegas in January.