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mittee believes the new arrangement will for our annual Bar member- directory was produced provide better, more cost effective services ship picnic. While I know in 2005, and it will ben- for the defense of indigent defendants. that all of you miss the rustic efit all of us to have a new The District Court for the Northern Dis- atmosphere of the Plunge, one, especially since we trict of Alabama was especially helpful to the lack of air conditioning have so many new mem- our work, having recently created a Public and crumbling cooking pit bers (and because at least some of us have changed dramatically since 2005!) I also want to con- gratulate all of you who participate in the work of the Birmingham Bar Volunteer Lawyers Program and the Birmingham Bar Foun- dation. Both of these organizations have achieved results this year that should be a cause of pride for our Bar, and I encour- age those of you who have not yet par- ticipated to support these organizations with your time and talent. It is incum- bent upon organized Bars throughout the country to give back to their communi- ties and to support pro bono and access to The 2012 Pro Bono Week “Justice Bus justice initiatives. The Birmingham Bar membership does an outstanding job at Defender’s office at the federal level. made it an impossibility. Nick Callahan both, and I am privileged to be part of As an experiment this year, we and the Entertainment Committee con- such a strong and supportive legal com- changed the venue for the Bench & Bar ducted a search for a new site, and settled munity. Retreat from Prattville to Tuscaloosa. on Old Car Heaven. This was an excel- Most who attended found it to be fun lent choice, and more than 1,000 mem- Finally, I look forward to the end of and educational, especially breakfast at bers attended – all reports were positive. my term with some regret. I have enjoyed the new Federal Courthouse, the pre- We plan to return to Old Car Heaven for this year tremendously, and I commend sentation by General Charles Krulack the 2013 Picnic and hope to have settled the staff and the Executive Committee from Birmingham Southern College, and on this location for years to come. It is for their commitment and hard work Judge Scott Coogler’s remarks about the both large enough to meet our needs and during my tenure. A common phrase I new building’s construction. That said, more accessible for our membership. is that the best title to have is that of “Im-have heard during the last several months the Bench & Bar Retreat Planning Com- On the topic of membership, our mediate Past President.” I look forward mittee has decided to return to Prattville rolls are increasing and as of this writing, to serving in that capacity, and to assist- for next year’s retreat primarily because we have 4,050 members, having added 60 ing Robert Baugh as our incoming Presi- of the enclosed nature of the Prattville at our most recent Executive Committee dent in any way possible. campus and the facilities offered. I am meeting. I am encouraged by this growth, confident we will have another successful especially as it indicates our continuing Thank you for the opportunity to retreat in 2013, and hopefully our atten- strength as a vibrant local bar association. serve as your President – it has been an dance will continue to grow. We also are in the process of publishing honor. I hope I have served you well, and a new and improved pictorial directory wish all of you the best for the holiday On a more nostalgic note, we finally season! Gof our Bar membership. The most recent had to leave Cascade Plunge as the site Birmingham Bar Bulletin/ Winter 2012 9


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