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Birmingham Bar Association Bulletin

President’s Message a diverse lawyer and helping him or her get the right case in your firm, or putting them on the best committee for their talent, and making an introduction to judges, other counsel, and clients and community leaders that highlights their goals and achievements. My bosses did this for me and it made an impact on my career. This year, the Diversity/Inclusivity Committee is chaired by Diandra “Fu” DeBrosse-Zimmermann, and the discussion will continue in a second and maybe even a third open symposium. I look forward to working with this Committee again. Every member should join this discussion so our association can continue its forward movement. Look for the announcements of these symposiums as we move ahead. Another very important aspect of the discussion is the engagement of young lawyers. I believe that young lawyers are the force of change; I do not want to lean on the generation that is slowing down or retiring from practice. Young lawyers can be innovative, diverse, energetic, quick and fun. I want to learn what the young lawyer needs and wants from their bar association; what is required of the association for young lawyers to take ownership of it. As lawyers, it is our charge to increase access to justice, to serve our community and to help others. The Birmingham Bar Volunteer Lawyers Program and the Birmingham Bar Foundation have made it their mission to do just this. The VLP has capitalized on the one thing that only a lawyer can do in our country, and that is to represent another person in the court system. The VLP’s Help Desks are now in the civil district court, domestic court, and bankruptcy court. Clients that need more in-depth assistance are referred to the VLP’s Pro Bono network. Legal and programs provided. This year, we have created the Task Force on Organizational Structure, chaired by Charles Fry.  This Task Force is charged with examining the current organizational and operational structure of the Bar, the Bar Foundation, and the Birmingham Bar Volunteer Lawyers Program.   The ultimate goal is to ensure that the three groups operate optimally, and in coordination. Toward that end, with the cooperation of the leadership of all three organizations, we have invited the ABA Division of Bar Services to assist with the review. A representative of the Division of Bar Services will meet with the Executive Committees of all three groups in February and then report to the Task Force. This will be a deliberative and exhaustive review, and the end result should be recommendations that allow the Bar to increase organizational efficiencies and maintain and grow our excellent service programs. Lawyers are leaders. Our education, knowledge and skills lead each of us to this position in the community. I encourage every lawyer to find a community partner and participate with the organization or agency to reach their goals, to volunteer time to the community, and to talk proudly about your profession and your job. When citizens see us giving back and becoming engaged in our own community, it builds respect for all of us. I appreciate every member of this association. When we gather and collaborate for good and better, everyone, including each of us, reaps the benefits. Thank you for the opportunity to serve. I am so proud of this bar and all its members and all the good work we do. I am looking forward to spending time with all of you this year. G help is also provided to veterans and the homeless through clinics located at the VA and Cooper Green Clinic. The Bar Foundation has focused on educating the community about the justice system through dispute resolution programming in the high schools, co-sponsoring programs for civic teachers and providing teaching materials, supplies and books. All this good work would not be possible When citizens see us giving back and becoming engaged in our own community, it builds respect for all of us. without the contributions of our membership. The Association, BBVLP and the Foundation are all mindful of the demands and requests placed on our member lawyers, and want to work together to reduce competition for those valuable resources of members’ time and money, without sacrificing the important services 10 Birmingham Bar Association


Birmingham Bar Association Bulletin
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