Page 9

Birmingham Bar Association Bulletin Winter 2015

THE BACKBONE OF THE BIRMINGHAM BAR ASSOCIATION IS ITS SUPERB STAFF. such joy and enthusiasm has been special. You truly are an awesome group. Th is year’s Executive Committee and its members have been wonderful to work with. We have tackled some tough issues, but have dealt with them with wisdom and sincerity, while enjoying each other and doing so with increased effi ciency. Th ose of you who haven’t been privileged to attend one of our meetings would be proud at how your representatives handle the business of the Association. We had some challenges this year, chief among them being the loss of beloved Executive Committee member Wyndall Ivey. He left us too soon, but will never be forgotten. Indeed, Bob MacKenzie and an impressive group of Wyndall’s friends are working together to plan a memorial event organized around another of Wyndall’s loves—UAB basketball— to honor him and his family. I am hopeful that you will fi nd a way to participate in that early next year. Th e backbone of the Birmingham Bar Association is its superb staff . Th at our large group is run so well by three individuals who sit at the controls at the offi ce each day is nothing short of miraculous. Julie Smith, Dana Th omas, and Bo Landrum deserve not only my thanks, but yours as well. Without their steady guidance, the whole ship would go down. I am certain I would have run it aground given half the chance. Julie Smith, whose beaming smile greets each one who enters the Birmingham Bar offi ces, is truly a gem. Born and raised on the Eastern Shore of Maryland, her dad practiced law and later served as a judge, thus introducing Julie to our profession at an early age. She is married to BBA member Tim Smith, and has graced us as the Birmingham Bar Association’s Director of Lawyer Referral, Events Coordinator and Lead Receptionist for six years. Dana Th omas is a Birmingham area native and has worked in the BBA offi ces for thirty-fi ve years, as Director of Membership & Continuing Legal Education, and as Financial Assistant to the Executive Director. Dana’s mom, Mary Nell, worked for the Association for a long time as well. Dana is our chief source of BBA history and lore, and all who have worked with her know that she truly has a servant’s heart. When long-time Executive Director Beth Carmichael retired several years ago, there was a shiver of anxiety that passed through our ranks, not knowing whether we could fi nd a capable soul to stand watch over our group. Th e search committee pulled a rabbit out of its hat, however, when it persuaded Bo Landrum to move to Birmingham to take the job. Raised in Shreveport, Louisiana, Bo obtained his law degree from the University of Baltimore, where he practiced for a while after graduation before moving on to staff and executive leadership roles with the American Bar Association, culminating in his leadership of the ABA’s Young Lawyers Division for ten years. Julie, Dana and Bo comprise a staff that is better than any bar association has ever seen. Th ey have made this year, for me, as easy as it could possibly have been. I have not once attended an Association function where anything went wrong, or at which I was not more than adequately briefed on where I was to be, when, where I was supposed to stand and what I was supposed to say. Truthfully, Bo would’ve written this President’s Page column for me had I asked, and if I had, it would have been written much better, and the primary diff erence would have been that he would have deleted the previous paragraph. It has been a very great privilege for me to serve as your President. Th ank you from the bottom of my heart for asking me to serve. My only hope is that, as I was taught when camping as a Boy Scout, I have left the place in somewhat better shape than it was in when I showed up. G Birmingham Bar Bulletin/ Winter 2015 9


Birmingham Bar Association Bulletin Winter 2015
To see the actual publication please follow the link above