Thursday, Sept. 20, 2007
 |  An e-Newsbrief from the Philadelphia Bar Association  | 
Vol. 8, No. 68

Association Mourns Passing of Former Chancellor Gittis

It is with great sadness that we mourn the loss of former Philadelphia Bar Association Chancellor and legal giant, Howard Gittis, who passed away on Sept. 16. A trailblazer of our profession in every sense of the word, Gittis was an accomplished attorney and a dynamic leader who believed that "courage is the quality which guarantees all others."

A champion of judicial independence, Gittis worked tirelessly to defend judges from unfair criticism and to address inequities in judicial compensation. At a time when women attorneys were far fewer in number, he advocated for the advancement of women in the profession, tapping a significant number of women to lead key positions in the Association’s committee structure.

Gittis believed that lawyers have a civic responsibility that goes beyond serving clients. He maintained that they should not isolate themselves from community leaders who are involved in the issues of the day, and invited dozens of organization representatives to join Bar Association committees and lend their voices. Likewise, he worked to demystify the law for countless Philadelphia residents by organizing mock trial events in the community and by inviting the public to weigh legal issues for themselves.

"This association is not the province of any one person or any one group. It is an association of a diverse group of lawyers all bound together by a common love and respect for the law," Gittis told Bar members at the Association's Annual Meeting prior to becoming Chancellor in 1983.

While serving as a corporate chair, president, chief executive officer and director in New York, Gittis remained a lifelong supporter of higher education locally. Our Association and our legal community have benefited greatly from the indelible contributions of Howard Gittis.

Jane Leslie Dalton

Doing 90 Minutes of Work in 60 Minutes

The Law Practice Management Division's Technology Committee will present the program "The Less-Paper Office: How to Do 90 Minutes of Work in 60 Minutes" today (Thursday, Sept. 20).

Committee Co-Chair Daniel J. Siegel will offer his tips on reducing or eliminating attorneys' reliance on paper. The meeting begins at 12 p.m. in the 11th floor Conference Center 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.

Register Online for 2007 Bench-Bar Conference

There's still time to register for the Association's annual Bench-Bar Conference at Bally's Atlantic City on Sept. 28 and 29, offering 14 different seminars and and the opportunity to receive up to 7 CLE credits.

This year's conference, "Saddle Up to a Bench-Bar Bonanza," has a Wild West theme and includes a black tie and blue jeans reception on Friday evening, Sept. 28. Sponsors for the 2007 Bench-Bar Conference include USI Colburn Insurance Service, LexisNexis, PNC Wealth Management, Trial Technologies, JAMS, Veritext and Kroll. Rooms at Bally's are $99 for Thursday night and $144 on Friday night, based on availability. Click here to register for the Bench-Bar Conference.

Nutter to Address Sections Sept. 25, Oct. 1

Democratic mayoral candidate Michael Nutter will discuss crime strategies at the Tuesday, Sept. 25 meeting of the Criminal Justice Section. He will discuss Family Court issues at the Monday, Oct. 1 meeting of the Family Law Section.

The Criminal Justice Section meeting begins at 12 p.m. in the 11th floor Conference Center 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.

The Oct. 1 Family Law Section meeting begins at 12 p.m. in the 11th floor Conference Center 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.

Republican mayoral candidate Al Taubenberger will meet with the Criminal Justice Section on Tuesday, Oct. 30 at a similar program.

Women Helping Women in the Legal Profession Sept. 25

The Women in the Profession Committee will present a program about the DirectWomen Institute, a program specifically designed to train and select women attorneys who can then serve on for-profit corporate boards at its Tuesday, Sept. 25 meeting.

Amelia H. Boss, co-chair of the DirectWomen Institute and a member of the ABA Commission on Women in the Profession and Abbe Fletman, former co-chair and current member of the Woman Advocate Committee of the ABA Litigation Section, will be the speakers at the program. The meeting begins at 12 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.

Plaintiffs' Firms to Speak on Hiring Sept. 27

Representatives from plaintiffs' firms will discuss hiring practices and the promotion of diversity at the Thursday, Sept. 27 meeting of the Minorities of the Profession Committee.

Speakers for the program include Mark W. Tanner, president of Philadelphia Trial Lawyers Association; Ruben Honik, immediate-past president of Pennsylvania Trial Lawyers Association; Laura Feldman, co-chair of Philadelphia Trial Lawyers Association's Diversity Committee; Bernard W. Smalley, co-chair of Philadelphia Trial Lawyers Association's Diversity Committee; Shanin Specter, co-chair of Pennsylvania Trial Lawyers Association's Diversity Committee; and Nadeem A. Bezar, member of the Philadelphia Trial Lawyers Association.

The meeting begins at 12 p.m. in the 11th floor Conference Center 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.

Panel Discussion on Elder Law Sept. 27

Panelists Sandy Pfeffer, chief counsel of the Philadelphia Corporation for Aging; Jerry Rothkoff, principal of Rothkoff Law; Gordon Wase, a partner with Wase & Wase; and Sue Wasserkrug, director of SeniorLAW Helpline, Senior Law Center will discuss the different facets of elder law at the Thursday, Sept. 27 meeting of the Elder Law Committee.

The meeting begins at 1 p.m. in the 11th floor Committee 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.

CLE Program on Freedom of Press Oct. 3

The CLE program "Is Freedom of the Press in Jeopardy?" will feature a debate from a panel of media experts on Wednesday, Oct. 3.

Panelists include Anne Gordon (moderator), former managing editor, The Philadelphia Inquirer ; Michael Berry, Levine Sullivan Koch & Schulz LLP; Adam Bonin, Cozen O'Connor; David Brown, BrownPartners; Dan Pohlig, content producer, WHYY/The Next Mayor project; and Jan Ting, Professor, Temple University Law School. The discussion will range from anonymous sources, the ever-changing blogosphere, media takeovers and the proposed Shield Law legislation. One hour of substantive CLE credit is available for attorneys who register in advance with the Pennsylvania Bar Institute. Visit for details.

This event is co-sponsored by the Philadelphia Public Relations Association and the Pennsylvania Bar Institute. Lunch is available for $7.50 for those members who register in advance. Click here to RSVP for this program.

Probate and Trust Law Quarterly Meeting Oct. 2

The Philadelphia Bar Association Probate and Trust Law Section and the Pennsylvania Bar Institute will present the October 2007 Probate and Trust Law Section Quarterly Meeting "The Estate Planner as Jack of All Trades" on Tuesday, Oct. 2.

The program, which will discuss multi-disciplinary issues for the trusts and estates lawyer, will be held from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m. at The CLE Conference Center on the 10th floor of the Wanamaker Building. Speakers will discuss intellectual property, family law, real estate and bankruptcy.

Click here for more information or to register for this program.

Client Development Workshop Begins Sept. 26

Philadelphia Bar Association members can receive $100 off the registration fee when signing up for The Training Resource Group's training program for associates of professional services firms.

The workshop, for attorneys looking to improve their client development skills, will be held Wednesday, Sept. 26, Oct. 10, Oct. 24 and Nov. 7 from 8 to 10 a.m. at the offices of The Training Resource Group, 100 N. 20th St., 4th floor.

The cost of the program is $895 per participant and includes evaluation, training, coaching session and materials. To RSVP for this program, call The Training Resource Group at (215) 320-4652 or e-mail

Public Interest Events, Trainings Scheduled

Rutgers University-Camden School of Law will hold the 22nd Mary Philbrook Public Interest Award Ceremony, on Thursday, Sept. 27 from 6 to 9 p.m., at the Ballroom At Collingswood, 315 White Horse Pike Collingswood, N.J. This year's Mary Philbrook Public Interest Award will be presented to retired New Jersey Supreme Court Chief Justice Deborah T. Poritz. Tickets cost $50 (purchase deadline Sept. 17). For more information, or to purchase tickets or sponsorship ads, contact Eve Biskind Klothen at 856-225-6608, or

• A Pro Bono Open House Fair will be held Thursday, Oct. 4 from 4 to 5:30 p.m. at the offices of Wolf, Block, Schorr & Solis-Cohen, LLP, 1650 Arch St., 22nd floor. Representatives from Philadelphia public interest law centers, legal services programs and pro bono referral programs will be available to speak informally about volunteer opportunities at their organizations. This event is free and open to all members of the Philadelphia Bar. Light refreshments will be provided. Please RSVP by Sept. 27 to Colleen Coonelly at or call (215) 977-2377. This event is sponsored by the Law Firm Pro Bono Committee of the Public Interest Section.

The Support Center for Child Advocates will host the 2007 Child Advocates Golf Classic on Monday, Oct. 8 at Huntingdon Valley Country Club. For more information, contact Louise Pangborn at 215-925-1913, extension 125 or e-mail

Philadelphia VIP will hold an open house for all members of the legal community on Thursday, Oct. 11 at VIP's offices at 42 S. 15th St., 4th floor, from 5 to 7 p.m. Meet the staff and board of directors of VIP, enjoy refreshments and hear about all the exciting things happening at VIP.

The Homeless Advocacy Project will conduct two lunchtime trainings on Thursday, Oct. 11 from 12 to 2 p.m., each providing two substantive hours of CLE credits. The first session, "How to Prepare for an SSI Hearing," is free for HAP volunteers. The training will be conducted by HAP senior staff attorney Pat Malley at the offices White & Williams, LLP, One Liberty Place, 18th Floor. Lunch will be provided. To register, contact Marsha Cohen at 215-523-9595 or The second two-hour substantive CLE training on veterans disability claims and will be conducted by HAP's veterans attorney Michael Taub at The CLE Conference Center on the 10th floor of the Wanamaker Building. To register, contact the PBI at 1-800-932-4637.

• Hispanic Bar Association of Pennsylvania Legal Education Fund will hold its 19th Annual Scholarship Reception on Wednesday, Oct. 17 at 5:30 p.m., at the University of the Arts, Broad and Pine Streets, Philadelphia. Tickets are $75 per person. The keynote speaker will be Charisse R. Lillie, senior vice president of Human Resources for Comcast Cable and Vice President of Human Resources for Comcast Corporation. RSVP by Oct. 8 to Carolina Spaventa at 215-564-8184 or

Philadelphia VIP will present its annual training event "Pro Bono Opportunities Day," on Thursday, Oct. 25 from 8:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. at Montgomery, Walker & Rhoads, LLP, 123 S. Broad St., 28th Floor, Philadelphia. All attorneys are invited to learn how to help Philadelphia's low-income population with their legal needs. Participants may attend one of the following substantive training sessions: Public Housing; Child Custody; Nonprofit Issues: From Incorporation to Operation; or Quiet Title/Fraudulent Conveyances. Following the training, VIP will offer each participant a pro bono case. Attorneys who attend a seminar and accept a case will earn two (2) substantive CLE credits. The cost of the program is $45 per attorney. Breakfast and training materials are included. The registration deadline is Monday, Oct. 15. To register, please contact Tanya Rambert at 215-523-9550, or

Marks to Receive O'Connor Award at Oct. Quarterly

Lynn A. Marks (right), a champion for court reform in Pennsylvania, has been named recipient of the Philadelphia Bar Association's 2007 Sandra Day O'Connor Award.

Marks is the executive director of Pennsylvanians for Modern Courts. The award presentation will be made during the Association's Quarterly Meeting and Luncheon on Tuesday, Oct. 16 at the Philadelphia Marriott Downtown. Ann Weaver Hart, the first woman president of Temple University, will be the keynote speaker at the event.

The O'Connor Award is conferred annually on a woman attorney who has demonstrated superior legal talent, achieved significant legal accomplishments and has furthered the advancement of women in both the profession and the community.

Tickets for the October Quarterly Meeting and Luncheon are $50 and can be purchased online by clicking here.

Ethnic, Race, Religious Sensitivities CLE Oct. 16

The Louis D. Brandies Law Society and the Jagiellonian Law Society will present the three-credit CLE workshop "Ethnic, Race and Religious Sensitivities in the Courtroom" on Tuesday, Oct. 16 from 2 to 5 p.m. in the 11th floor Conference Center of Bar Association headquarters, 1101 Market St.

The program will be moderated by Judges Marlene Lachman and Sandra Mazer Moss of the Court of Common Pleas of Philadelphia. Judges Moss and Lachman are also the panel program planners along with Peter H. Demkovitz of the Jagiellonian Law Society and Michael J. Berkowitz of the Louis D. Brandeis Law Society.

Panelists include Imam Muhammad Abdur-Razzaq Miller, Mosque of So. Bawa Muhayadeen Philadelphia; Rabbi Lance J. Sussman, Ph.D., Reform Congregation Keneseth Israel, Elkins Park, Pa.; Yan Q. Huo, board certified art psychotherapist and licensed professional counselor; Alonzo Webster Chairman of the Hospital Liaison Committee Jehovah’s Witnesses; Fr. Mark Horak, pastor of Old Saint Josephs Church, Philadelphia; and the Rev. Charles W. Quann, pastor of Bethlehem Baptist Church, Penllyn and Spring House, Pa.

The program is approved by the Pennsylvania CLE Board with two substantive and one ethics credit. Enrollment is $85 per person ($70 for members of the sponsoring organizations) and early registration is strongly suggested since seating is limited.

To register send your name, address, phone number, e-mail address, attorney ID number and society affiliation along with a check to “Brandeis Law Society” in the appropriate amount to Michael J. Berkowitz, Esq., 11th Floor, Seven Penn Center, 1635 Market St., Philadelphia, Pa., 19103-2212.

YLD A-Scare-Ium at the Aquarium Oct. 20

The Young Lawyers Division will host its family friendly "A-Scare-Ium at the Aquarium" on Saturday, Oct. 20 at the Adventure Aquarium in Camden, N.J. from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

Children are encouraged to wear their Halloween costumes to the event. Admission is $25 for adults and $15 for children and includes lunch, an animal encounter, a pick-your-own pumpkin and painting activity and a special showing of SpongeBob SquarePants 4D ride. Click here to purchase tickets.

Tickets Available for Lawyerpalooza October 25

The Young Lawyers Division will host Lawyerpalooza at Kildare's Headhouse Square (2nd & South streets) on Thursday, Oct. 25.

Beginning at 6:30 p.m., lawyers who moonlight in bands, such as A Band Called M, Class Action, Brand New Gods and Pray for Mojo, will be featured. There will also be other performances by Brad Shuttleworth and Jim Wells. You've seen them in court, now see them on stage! The cost of $10 includes drink tickets, heavy hors d'oeuvres and drink specials.

Lawyerpalooza is sponsored by Esquire Deposition Services, LLC and Summit Court Reporting, Inc. Click here to purchase tickets.

Law Firm Marketing Luncheon Sept. 25

The Delaware Valley Law Firm Marketing Group is hosting a September 25 luncheon at Dechert LLP on the "The State of Law Firm Marketing."

Micah Buchdahl, Vice Chair of the American Bar Association's Law Practice Management Section and Chair of the ABA's first-ever stand-alone law marketing conference, is the guest speaker.

Buchdahl will provide DVLFMG members with a sneak-peak at the marketing trends and issues that are affecting, and will affect, law firm marketers entering the industry's fourth decade. Hot topics to be covered include:

  • Ethics
  • Diversity
  • PR/Media Relations
  • Budgeting
  • Technology
  • Mergers
  • Corporation Trends
  • Rainmaking Pressures

For more information and to register online go to

HIAS and Council Annual Luncheon Meeting Sept. 25

The Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society and Council Migration Service of Philadelphia will recognize John Grogan and Ned Diver for their pro bono service at the 125th Annual Luncheon Meeting on Tuesday, Sept. 25.

A team of lawyers, lead by Grogan and Diver, represented a HIAS and Council client denied a marriage license due to his immigration status. Thanks to the well-prepared legal challenge, Judge A. Richard Caputo of the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania ordered the Register of Wills for Luzerne County to reverse her decision and grant the couple their marriage license. Grogan and Diver have continued to take on pro-bono cases for HIAS and Council.

HIAS and Council will also be presenting the Judge Harold and Renée Berger Book Scholarship to three immigrant students: Viktoriya Genzel, Peter Ginzburg, and Tikva Giterman. The keynote address for the Annual Luncheon will be given by Dr. Jerry Ehrlich, a long-time volunteer for Doctors Without Borders and a pediatrician from Cherry Hill, N.J. He will share his first-hand observations of the horrific impact of genocide on the children of Darfur.

The program begins at 12 p.m. at the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia, 2100 Arch St. Tickets are $40 for the general public and $15 for nonprofit direct service personnel. RSVP to Sarah Peterson at (215) 832-0920 or via e-mail at

Brennan Award Nominations Being Accepted

Nominations are being accepted for the Philadelphia Bar Association's prestigious Justice William J. Brennan Jr. Distinguished Jurist Award. The award will be presented at the Association's Annual Meeting and Luncheon on Dec. 4, 2007 at 12 p.m. at the Park Hyatt Philadelphia at the Bellevue.

The award recognizes a jurist who adheres to the highest ideals of judicial service. Any member of the state or federal bench, whether active or retired, who has made a significant, positive impact on the quality or administration of justice in Philadelphia is eligible for consideration. Examples of accomplishments worthy of nomination include innovations in court administration, implementation of pioneering case management techniques, assumption of a leadership role in areas affecting the administration of justice, publication of a significant opinion, article, or other scholarly work, or the like.

This year's Brennan Award Committee is chaired by John Soroko. Nominations for the Justice Brennan Distinguished Jurist Award should be forwarded to: Brennan Award, Attn: Areetha Carter, Esq., Staff Counsel, Philadelphia Bar Association, 1101 Market St., 11th Floor, Philadelphia, PA 19107. All nominations should include the full name, address and telephone number of both the nominee and the person submitting the nomination, a summary of the nominee's accomplishments, and any pertinent supporting material the committee should consider. All nominations must be received no later than 5 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 19, 2007.

Nominations Sought for 2007 Wachovia Fidelity Award

Nominations are now being accepted for the Philadelphia Bar Association's 2007 Wachovia Fidelity Award. Nominations should be made in writing. Please include a detailed statement setting forth information and reasons why you are recommending the nominee for this award. The deadline for receipt of nominations is 5 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 12.

Nominations should be sent to Tracey McCloskey, Philadelphia Bar Association, c/o Fidelity Award Committee, 1101 Market St., 11th Floor, Philadelphia, PA 19107.

The criteria for the award are:

Significant accomplishments in improving the administration of justice (preferably in Philadelphia);

The absence of prior recognition for this work by the Philadelphia Bar Association;

Distinguished service consistently rendered over a considerable period of time or a single outstanding achievement in a particular year. (The fact that this single achievement may have occurred some years ago is not material so long as it has not been recognized.);

The accomplishment must arise from voluntary activities rather than for service rendered as a paid professional; and

It is preferred that the recipient be a member of the Philadelphia Bar Association not now in public office or directly involved with the court operations or any other public service activity.

Workers' Comp Section Seeks Award Nominees

The Association's Workers' Compensation Section will present its 7th annual Martha Hampton Award later this year. This award was named in honor of an attorney who was committed to the practice of workers compensation law. Each year a committee reviews nominations as to the attorney or judge who best exemplifies Martha's unique compassion and dedication to her clients, her professionalism, scholarship and good will with her peers.

It should be noted all members of the bar and bench who practice workers' compensation law are eligible. This is not an award restricted to claimants' attorneys. Past winners have included counsel from both sides of the aisle as well as from the bench.

This year's Award Committee will be chaired by Marc S. Jacobs (a partner with Hampton at Galfand Berger) and the co-chairs of the section from last year, Judge Patricia M. Bachman, Valerie H. Lieberman and Eric L. Segal. In addition to the award, a charitable contribution is made each year to Kids Chance by Galfand Berger, on behalf of the Section. Kids Chance offers scholarships to children who have lost a parent due to a work-related injury.

Your nominations are important. We encourage your participation. Please include your thoughts for making any nomination. All nominations can be e-mailed to Marc S. Jacobs at or mailed to Jacobs at 1818 Market St., 23rd Floor, Philadelphia, Pa. 19103.

Legal Clinic for Disabled Stroll & Roll Sept. 23

The Legal Clinic for the Disabled will hold its 16th Annual Stroll & Roll on Sunday, Sept. 23 beginning at Lloyd Hall, the first boathouse along Kelly Drive. Registration begins at 9 a.m. and the event starts at 10 a.m.

There is a $30 entry fee for this event, payable to the Legal Clinic for the Disabled. Specials guests will include the Phillie Phanatic. For more information, visit, call (215) 587-3350 or e-mail Tom Prettyman at

Volunteers Sought for Commerce Court Opinion Program

The Business Litigation Committee is looking for volunteers to work with business law students from Temple University's James E. Beasley School of Law and Rutgers University-Camden School of Law to compile all Commerce Court opinions in an encyclopedia/treatise format. The goal of the project is to create an online compilation and analysis of Commerce Court opinions by subject matter, for use by members of the bar and other interested parties.

Each pair of students, under the guidance of a lawyer-editor, collects, analyzes and summarizes the opinions relating to a given subject. The lawyer-editor then works with the students to finalize the product into a distinct "chapter." Most of the labor is performed by the students, but volunteer lawyers would have the opportunity to have impact on this work and to act as a mentor to the students. Each individual chapter involves some synthesizing and categorizing of ideas, so there will be editorial comment without the labor-intensive effort that accompanies the drafting of a scholarly treatise. Ultimately the project should be of mutual benefit to the volunteers, the students and the bar.

Three chapters already have been posted on the Bar Association Web site, addressing arbitration issues and restrictive covenants. Click here to find those chapters under the heading "Commerce Case Management Program Opinion Project." There are currently more than 10 lawyers working with more than 20 students on the project.

If you are interested in being a part of this project, please contact Lee Applebaum at (215) 893-8702 or

Brandeis Society Accepting Levy Award Nominations

Nominations are now being accepted for the Benjamin F. Levy Community Service Award, an award presented by the Louis D. Brandeis Law Society at its annual Hanukkah Party on Thursday, Nov. 29.

The award provides recognition to an individual who is a member of the bench or bar and has demonstrated a sustained commitment to serving the legal and broader community. The award is named to honor the life of Benjamin F. Levy, whose efforts contributed to the creation of the Louis D. Brandeis Law Society. Past recipients have included prominent members of the bench and bar.

Nominations, including a brief statement as to why the particular nominee should be considered for the Award, must be submitted by no later than Friday, Oct. 26, 2007 to Michael J. Berkowitz, Chancellor, Louis D. Brandeis Law Society at or via fax at (215) 751-1142.

Business Journal to Spotlight Bar Dec. 28

The Philadelphia Business Journal is producing a special Philadelphia Bar Association supplement in its Dec. 28 edition.

The objective is to market, to the Business Journal reader, the positive impact the legal community, the Bar Association and individual member law firms have on local commerce and businesses in the Philadelphia region.

The deadline for reserving advertising space is Nov. 30. For more information, contact Michelle Stuhl at (215) 238-5114 or e-mail her at

You have received this message because you are listed with the Philadelphia Bar Association as a subscriber to the Bar Reporter Online. This message may contain commercial content. If you wish to add, modify or delete a Bar Reporter Online subscription, either send an e-mail to, or go to
Philadelphia Bar Association, 1101 Market St., 11th Floor, Philadelphia, PA 19107, 215-238-6300.