One of the wonderful things about TIPS is that there are so many different ways to get involved. We have General Committees, Standing Committees, and Task Forces that all serve different purposes. Some are open to all TIPS members, though others require an appointment by the TIPS Chair. For the uninitiated, or even for veteran TIPS members looking for new ways to get involved, here is a quick reference guide to understanding TIPS Committees.
One of the best ways to start your involvement in TIPS is to join one of over 30 General Committees offered in TIPS. General Committees are open to all TIPS members and are specific to practice areas like Business Litigation and Products Liability, to name a few. One of the great things about our General Committees is the Section is always adding new committees to address emerging areas of law that are relevant to our members. Most recently, our Cannabis Law Task Force became a permanent General Committee in 2019, as this topic continues to develop and become a growing area for many of our members.
TIPS General Committees offer wonderful opportunities to network, publish in a specific area, and earn CLE credits specific to your practice. Most General Committees meet at least four times each year, including the Annual Meeting, Fall Section Conference, Mid-Year Meeting, and Spring Section Conference. If you’re interested in learning more about a General Committee, don’t hesitate to show up at one of the meetings or contact the General Committee Chair to find out ways to get involved! The Events and CLE Calendar on the TIPS website is an excellent resource for identifying what each General Committee has going on and when.
Once you’ve gotten your feet wet by being involved in a General Committee, another way to get involved is by getting appointed to a Special Standing Committee, such as the CLE Board, one of the various TIPS publications editorial boards (such as TortSource!), or Law in Public Service. Standing Committees are the hands and feet of TIPS, working to provide both member benefits (such as Long Range Planning, CLE, and Publications) and service opportunities to the public. Appointments to Standing Committees are made by the TIPS Section Chair each year. If you’re interested in learning more about a Standing Committee or getting involved, contact that Standing Committee’s Chair to ask questions or let them know about your interest! Appointments to the Standing Committees are generally based upon recommendations by the Standing Committee Chair(s) during the January before the upcoming bar year. So if you’re interested in getting involved, make sure and let the Chair(s) know early.
From time to time, Council will appoint a Task Force to either manage a program (such as the TIPS Leadership Academy) or be responsible for investigating and reporting on specific issues ranging from Cybersecurity to Disaster Preparedness. Although serving on a TIPS Task Force requires appointment by the TIPS Section Chair, meetings are often open to general TIPS membership. To learn more about a specific Task Force, visit the TIPS website or contact the Task Force Chair to let them know that you’re interested in getting involved!