Thursday, May 11, 2006
 |  An e-Newsbrief from the Philadelphia Bar Association  | 
Vol. 7, No. 29

Chancellor's Forum on Diversity Beyond the Large Firms

A Chancellor's Forum, "Diversity Beyond the Large Firms," will be held Monday, June 5 at the CLE Conference Center at the Wanamaker Building. This unique conference for small and mid-size firms and public interest practitioners will feature a discussion on the challenges and successes for creating a diverse and inclusive work environment.

Chancellor Elect Jane L. Dalton will open the event, followed by keynote speaker Charisse R. Lillie, vice president of human resources for Comcast. Trial consultant Melissa M. Gomez will present "The Journey Continues: Understanding What It Means to Have a Diversity-Friendly Workplace."

The panel discussion "Creating a Model for Progress: Diversity Challenges and Successes From the Front Lines" follows, with moderator Karen Jackson Vaughn and panelists Carl G. Cooper, former Chancellor Deborah R. Willig, Roosevelt Hairston Jr., Louis Rulli and James A. Pabarue. A reception with federal and state judges follows.

Three CLE credits are available for this program. To register for this event, visit or call (800) 247-4724.

53 Firms Donate $1.1 Million to Raising the Bar Campaign

With the addition of Sidney L. Gold & Associates PC, Booth and Tucker and Smyler & Gentile, pledges of support from Philadelphia law firms for legal services have passed the $1 million threshold, with minimum promised contributions now at $1,106,220. Fifty-three law firms representing more than 3,400 attorneys have heeded Chancellor Alan M. Feldman's call in the Raising the Bar Campaign.

Campaign organizers remain confident that many more firms will agree to participate in the weeks and months ahead, according to Feldman. The Raising the Bar Campaign is a joint effort by the Philadelphia Bar Association and the Philadelphia Bar Foundation to increase funding for Philadelphia public interest law centers.

Each firm made a pledge of at least $300 per attorney in its Philadelphia office, with a number of firms committing to as much as $400. Seventeen of the firms are among the 20 largest as listed in PaLAW 2005. To contribute, contact Maureen Mingey, Executive Director of the Philadelphia Bar Foundation.

Click here for a list of the participating law firms and for more information about the Raising the Bar campaign.

Judges to Examine Differences Between Courts

U.S. District Court Judges Lawrence F. Stengel, R. Barclay Surrick and Petrese B. Tucker will discuss practice differences between state and federal courts at the Wednesday, May 17 meeting of the Federal Courts Committee.

The meeting begins at 12:30 p.m. in the 10th floor Board Room of Bar Association headquarters, 1101 Market St. Lunch is available for $7.50 for those members who register in advance. Click here to RSVP for this program.

Reception for Commerce Court Judges May 11

The Business Litigation Committee will hold its annual reception for Commerce Court judges tonight, Thursday, May 11 at the Westin Philadelphia, 99 S. 17th St., beginning at 6 p.m.

Tickets are $80 per person or $750 for a group of 10. Cocktails and heavy hors d'oeuvres will be served. Click here to purchase tickets for this event.

Bike-a-Thon Committee to Meet May 16

The Association's Bike-a-Thon Committee will meet on Tuesday, May 16 at 12:30 in the 11th floor Committee Room South of Bar Association headquarters, 1101 Market St.

The ACS Bike-a-Thon takes place Sunday, July 9 and begins at the base of the Ben Franklin Bridge and ends in Lenape Park in Mays Landing, N.J. Click here for more information about the event.

Anyone interested in becoming a sponsor should contact Jeffrey Abramowitz at 215-568-4980. Sponsorship opportunities are still available.

"Merger" Author Freund to Address Committee May 17

James C. Freund, author of Anatomy of a Merger will be the featured speaker at the Wednesday, May 17 meeting of the Mergers and Acquisitions Subcommittee and the Business Law Section.

This session is open to all members of the Business Law Section, and members of the legal community. The event is free of charge to members of the Business Law Section and for non-members who were admitted to the Bar on and after 2001. The cost is $10 for non-members who were admitted to the Bar before 2001). Lunch is included. Attendees will receive a copy of Freund's book Smart Negotiating: How to Make Good Deals in the Real World, which he will gladly sign following the session.

The meeting begins at 12:30 p.m. at The CLE Conference Center on the 10th floor of the Wanamaker Building. Please RSVP to Michael Ecker at, chair of the Mergers and Acquisitions Subcommittee. If you are not a member of the Business Law Section, and were admitted to the Bar before 2001, you can either join the Business Law Section (cost is $20 per year), or make your check payable to the "Philadelphia Bar Association, Business Law Section" in the amount of $10 prior to the luncheon, or when you arrive for the luncheon on May 17.

Workers' Comp CLE Program on Gardner Case May 17

The Workers' Compensation Section is sponsoring a lunchtime CLE seminar "A Review of the Gardner Case" on Wednesday, May 17.

Speakers for the program include Timothy P. Bulman, George Martin and Peter J. Weber. The program has been approved for 1 Substantive CLE credit. Participants wishing to receive the CLE credit will be required to pay a fee of $25 for members of the Bar Association admitted for more than five years, and $20 for members of the Association admitted for less than five years. If you wish to register in advance please visit, call PBI Customer Service at 1-800-932-4637.

Lunch will be available for an additional fee of $7.50 per person. Click here to purchase lunch for this event.

Workers' Comp, Real Property Sections Plan Spring Events

The Workers' Compensation Section will hold its annual spring party on Wednesday, June 7 from 6 to 9 p.m. at Manayunk Brewery and Restaurant, 4120 Main St., in Manayunk.

Tickets are $45 per person and includes two drink tickets and heavy hors d'oeuvres. Click here to order tickets online.

The Real Property Section will hold its Annual Spring Reception on Thursday, June 8 beginning at 5:30 p.m. at Maggiano's Little Italy, 1201 Filbert St.

Tickets to the event are $5 and are available by clicking here.

PBI Program on Terrorism and Torture May 19

The Pennsylvania Bar Institute will present "Terrorism and Torture" on Friday, May 19 at the CLE Conference Center, Wanamaker Building, from 12 to 2 p.m. Registration and lunch begin at 11:15 a.m. This seminar is part of PBI's Public Policy series.

Terrorism is the battleground of the 21st century and torture is a hot button in the political arena. A panel of experts will discuss these issues from both a civil and criminal perspective.

Michael Isikoff, Newsweek investigative correspondent and award-winning journalist, has joined the faculty for this seminar. Isikoff has written extensively on the U.S. government's war on terrorism, the Abu Ghraib scandal, and many other national issues. Two prominent Philadelphia lawyers who also concentrate their practices on the issues of terrorism and torture will join Isikoff. Robert Swift is a senior member of Kohn Swift & Graf, PC and concentrates his practice on complex civil litigation, including class actions representing both individuals and corporations. Theodore Simon has been a criminal defense attorney in Philadelphia for the past 31 years and has handled many high-profile matters, including several international cases. Some of his high-profile cases include representing Michael Fay, Ira Einhorn and Don King. Come join these esteemed speakers and hear a captivating analysis of one of the world's most debated topics.
This course qualifies for 2 CLE credits. Call 800-932-4637 or 800-247-4724 or visit for more information or to register.

Bar Association 5K Run/Walk May 21

The Association's 5K Run/Walk returns for its 27th year on Sunday, May 21 along the Schuylkill River on Martin Luther King Drive (fomerly West River Drive) adjacent to the Philadelphia Museum of Art. The event benefits the Support Center for Child Advocates.

The race features several competition divisions: open-individual, Bar Association members, company teams, legal teams and male and female divisions. Runners are also divided into age groups. Awards are presented to participants in all divisions.

For more information, or to learn more about becoming an event sponsor, contact Eric S. Marzluf at (215) 567-2010, extension 130 or by e-mail at; Tom Bell at (215) 887-2050, extension 107 or by e-mail at; or Sandra Lavini at (215) 925-1913, extension 126 or by e-mail at

Click here to print out a registration form, or visit to register online.

Bar Association Night at the Phillies June 14

Join your colleagues and friends at Citizens Bank Park at Bar Association Night at the Phillies on Wednesday, June 14 when the Phillies take on their National League East rivals, the New York Mets at 7:05 p.m.

Tickets can be purchased online by clicking here. Tickets are $36 and $28. The login name for the electronic ticket purchase is BARN and the password is 0614. The log-in is case sensitive, so make sure the items are entered correctly.

Mfume to Address Bar at June 19 Quarterly Meeting

Kweisi Mfume, former president and chief executive officer of the NAACP and candidate for U.S. Senate in Maryland, will deliver the annual Judge A. Leon Higginbotham Jr. Memorial Public Interest Lecture at the Philadelphia Bar Association's Quarterly Meeting and Luncheon on Monday, June 19 at the Park Hyatt Philadelphia at the Bellevue.

A lifelong champion of individual rights, Judge Higginbotham had a legal career that spanned nearly half a century. Since Marian Wright Edelman, founder and president of the Children's Defense Fund, delivered the first Higginbotham lecture in 1999, notables such as Juan Williams, Charles J. Ogletree, Chaka Fattah and Cornel West have filled the role. Tickets to the luncheon are $50 for Association members and $55 for non-members. Click here to purchase tickets online. New members of the Association's 50-, 60-, 65- and 70-Year Clubs will also be honored.

After serving five terms in Congress, Mfume resigned in 1996 to take over as the leader of the NAACP, a post he held for nine years. He is credited with restoring respect to the Association as well as instituting management and financial structures that led to an increase in endowment funds as well as a budget surplus. In March 2005, Mfume announced his candidacy for the Senate seat currently held by Paul Sarbanes, who will retire this year after serving in the Senate since 1977. Mfume, a member of the Democratic Party, seeks to become the first African American to represent Maryland in the Senate.

Organizations Schedule Spring Fund-Raisers

The ACLU of PA will hold its 24th Annual Defending Freedom event on Thursday, May 11, featuring cartoonist Tom Tomorrow with a slideshow of civil liberties-related cartoons and commentary, from 6 to 9 p.m., at the Downtown Marriott, 1201 Market St. For ticket information call (215) 592-1513, extension 122 or e-mail

The Center for Lesbian and Gay Civil Rights will hold its 10th Anniversary Celebration on Saturday, May 13 from 7 to 10 p.m., at the College of Physicians of Philadelphia, 19 S. 22nd St. For ticket information contact Alicia Williamson at (215) 731-1447, extension 13 or e-mail

The Support Center for Child Advocates will hold its Annual Champions of Children Benefit Reception and Volunteer Celebration on Wednesday, May 24 from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. at Main Banking Lobby of Wachovia, Broad and Walnut Streets. For more information, call (215) 925-1913.

Friends of Farmworkers will hold its 30th Anniversary Celebration on Wednesday, June 28 from 5 to 7 p.m. at the Hilton Garden Inn, 11th and Arch streets. Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas Judge Frederica A. Massiah-Jackson, Immediate-Past Chancellor Andrew A. Chirls and Efren Diego will be honored at the event. Tickets are $75. For more information, call (215) 733-0878 or e-mail

Bar Foundation Golf Classic June 26

The 18th Annual Philadelphia Bar Foundation Golf Classic will be held Monday, June 26 at Philadelphia Cricket Club in Flourtown. The 18-hole tournament, which benefits the Foundation, will begin at 12:30 p.m. with a shotgun start on both the Wissahickon and Militia Hill courses. Click here to register online.

The 2005 tournament raised more than $100,000 for the Bar Foundation, the charitable arm of the Bar Association. During 2005, the Foundation funded 29 law-related programs with grants ranging from $2,000 to $100,000.

Prizes will be awarded for team low net, individual low net and individual low gross. A new prize for law-firm (defined as a foursome with at least three members from the same firm) low gross will also be awarded.

The tournament is open to the public with a general fee of $375 that includes greens fees, golf cart, lunch, refreshments on the course, and cocktails and dinner. Members of the Association's Young Lawyers Division may participate for a discounted fee of $295. Event and hole sponsorships are also available. For more information on sponsorships or playing in the event, contact Melissa Engler at (215) 238-6347. Click here to register online.

Legal Directory 2006 Now Available for Purchase

The Legal Directory 2006 is now available. If you've ordered your copy, it will soon arrive; if not, place your order now for this indispensable resource – and receive free access to The Legal Directory Online.

This year's edition includes listings for more than 1,500 law firms and 17,000 attorneys in Philadelphia and the surrounding Pennsylvania counties, Delaware and New Jersey, in addition to Bar Association contacts and committees; information on federal, state and county courts and government agencies; a judges index; alternative dispute resolution resources; and a special business-to-business section tailored to the legal community.

New for 2006, each copy of The Legal Directory includes complimentary access to The Legal Directory Online. So information will be only a few mouse clicks away and accessible wherever you go.

Over the coming weeks, new features will be available on The Legal Directory Online. You can still search for firms and attorneys; but you'll also have information on local courts and court rules, area bar associations and breaking legal news at your fingertips.
Click here to order The Legal Directory 2006 today!

Police Athletic League to Honor D.A. Abraham May 11

District Attorney Lynne Abraham, along with fellow honorees Police Commissioner Sylvester Johnson and Larry Magid of Electric Factory Concerts, will receive the Police Athletic League Award at the PAL Award Dinner tonight, Thursday, May 11 at the Wyndham Philadelphia.

For ticket information, please contact Eric Cushing at the Police Athletic League at (215) 291-9000, extension 109 or visit