June 22, 2010

ONE WEEK LEFT to Register for YLD Family Night at the Phillies

The deadline to register for the July 29 YLD Family Night at the Phillies is just one week away, June 29. Don't miss out on this great event, which costs $35 for adults and $25 for children 12-and-under and includes a pre-game tailgate at McFadden's at the Ballpark from 5-7 p.m featuring food and drinks followed by that night's Phillies game against the Arizona Diamondbacks. Non-members are welcome but must be accompanied by a Bar Association member. REGISTER NOW.

Reid Reiterates Bar Association a Resource to All at YLD Diversity Scholarship Reception

Scott Reid, a member at Cozen O'Connor and the Philadelphia Bar Association's Cabinet Officer on Diversity, reminded the nearly 100 attendees of the June 17 YLD Diversity Scholarship Reception that the Bar Association is a place for all types of individuals and encouraged broad participation and the utilization of the Association's resources.

Reid's keynote remarks kicked off the formal portion of the reception, where five outstanding local law students were recognized with Diversity Scholarships. A CLE featuring distinguished panelists and concerning the dangers of stereotypes and subconscious bias preceded the reception and was co-hosted by the Bar Association's Civil Rights Committee.

The reception was co-hosted by the Hispanic Bar Association of Pennsylvania, the Asian Pacific American Bar Association of Pennsylvania, the Gay and Lesbian Lawyers of Philadelphia, the South Asian Bar Association of Philadelphia, the Barristers' Association of Philadelphia, and the Philadelphia Bar Association's LGBT Rights Committee.

For more details on both events, click here. For pictures from the events, click here


Tip of the Month: Ways to Go Green in the Office

As part of his agenda, Chancellor Scott Cooper established The Green Ribbon Task Force, which is charged with the task of determining how the Philadelphia Bar Association can decrease its carbon footprint and to help bar members establish voluntary green standards.

Back in April, the Task Force partnered with The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society and planted numerous bare root trees around the city in celebration of Earth Day. The planted trees will help to reduce the amount of fossil fuels burned to produce electricity and, since trees provide shading in summer and wind blocking in the winter, will help to save energy by cutting indoor cooling and heating costs. Trees also absorb airborne pollutants and store carbon, which slows global warming.

The Task Force is currently developing volunteer guidelines for local law firms that wish to commit to greening their business practices. Some ideas include shutting down computers, monitors and printers when not in use or, if necessary, utilizing standby modes for computers; providing pitchers of water for meetings rather than individual water bottles; printing and copying on both sides of office paper; providing and encouraging opposing counsel to exchange all documents, including discovery and exhibits, via e-mail, CD, DVD or, if necessary, hard drives; and sending holiday e-cards instead of paper cards.

In addition to the forthcoming guidelines, the Task Force is also planning another tree planting event for the fall.

For more information on The Green Ribbon Task Force, including how you can become involved, contact Michael Hayes or Kim Jessum, Task Force Co-Chairs.

Stephanie Mensing is a partner at the law firm of Wisniewski & Mensing, LLP and a member of the YLD Executive Committee. She can be reached at smensing@wm-law.net.smensing@wm-law.net.

Entertainment Corner: Summer in the City of Brotherly Love

It's summer time! Aneesh, your usual correspondent on all things entertainment, asked me to write a few words for this month's issue. Overwhelmed by options, I decided to focus on some of the great things Philadelphia offers in the summer: culture, food and sports.

First up, the arts! You're probably all busy lawyers and think you don't have time for the arts. "There's no time!" you cry. "Sarah, there's never any time!"

I know. It's rough. But you could use a little more culture in your life. Why not check out an outdoor concert at the Mann Center? Now that it's summer, you should be taking advantage of all the great shows the Mann offers. What, you don't have a car/don't want to fight with traffic at that time? Shuttles run from various points around Center City. Worried about getting hungry? Stephen Starr provides the concessions. See? No excuses.

There are also a ton of shows playing in the many Philadelphia theaters if you prefer something with a little more A/C. Check out www.philadelphia-theater.com for your options. If you need a guide through the rest of the Philly art world (First Fridays, festivals, etc.), go to theartblog.org.

As for restaurants, Philly has so many great options that I couldn't decide on just one to profile. And no one is too busy for a great meal. Here are my current top three restaurants:

--Amis: Phenomenal Italian. Try to sit at the kitchen bar so you can see the chefs in action.

--Village Whiskey: Get the burger. I like mine with the caramelized onions and cheddar cheese. Meat or vegetarian, both are delicious. Yes, the veggie version is slightly mushy, but has more flavor than 10 frozen veggie burgers.

--Han Dynasty: Burn-your-face-off-hot, Szechuan deliciousness. My favorite "it's too hot to cook" dish is the cold chili noodles.

For more food options and news, visit Philly Homegrown at food.visitphilly.com.

Finally, summer wouldn't be complete without a baseball game. Head down to Citizens Bank Park to cheer on the Phillies and maybe snag some dollar dogs. For a more wallet-friendly day, check out the Camden Riversharks or the Reading Phillies for some minor league action.

Sarah Galbraith is an attorney at Volpe & Koenig who hereby vows to cram enough fun into this summer to get her through the next Philadelphia winter.

Chancellor's Forum on Civil Gideon, July 7

The Bar Association will present a Chancellor's Forum on Civil Gideon featuring a keynote address by Prof. Russell Engler, a national expert on the subject and the Director of Clinical Programs at New England School of Law, on July 7. The program, titled "Civil Gideon: Establishing a Right to Counsel for Low Income Persons in Civil Cases Where Basic Human Needs Are at Stake," will begin at 12 p.m. on the 11th Floor of Bar Association headquarters, 1101 Market St.

The program will also feature a panel discussion including Catherine C. Carr, Executive Director of Community Legal Services, and Joseph A. Sullivan, Special Counsel and Director of Pro Bono Programs at Pepper Hamilton LLP, who are Co-Chairs of the Bar Association's Civil Gideon Task Force, formed in early 2009 by Immediate Past-Chancellor Sayde Ladov.

Civil Gideon is a growing national movement exploring strategies to provide legal counsel, as a matter of right and at public expense, to low income persons involved in urgent civil legal proceedings, such as those involving shelter and child custody. The term takes its name from Gideon v. Wainwright, the landmark 1963 U.S. Supreme Court case in which the court decided indigent defendants have a constitutional right to be represented by an attorney, at no charge, in state criminal cases.

In November 2009, the Bar Association's Board of Governors adopted a preliminary report from the Civil Gideon Task Force that recommended the endorsement of pilot projects in eviction and mortgage foreclosure defense and custody cases as well as the development of an education and communications plan to inform the legal and public community about Civil Gideon.

The July 7 Chancellor's Forum will further educate Bar Association members on the topic as well as provide a venue for questions and discussion.

Professor Engler has written several published texts on Civil Gideon, including And Justice for All-Including the Unrepresented Poor: Revisiting the Roles of Judges, Mediators and Clerks (1999), Shaping A Context-Based Civil Gideon from the Dynamics of Social Change (2006) and Connecting Self-Representation to Civil Gideon: What Existing Data Reveal About When Counsel is Most Needed (2010). An upcoming title, Pursuing Access to Justice and Civil Right to Counsel in a Time of Economic Crisis, will be released later this year.

Professor Engler also serves on the Massachusetts Access to Justice Commission and the Boston Bar Association's Task Force on Expanding the Civil Right to Council. He joined the New England School of Law faculty in 1993 and teaches the Lawyering Process and Public Interest Law Seminar and Clinic, co-teaches clinical component courses, and directs the Public Service Project for the law school's Center for Law and Social Responsibility.

During the 1999-2000 academic school year, Professor Engler was a guest lecturer on law at Harvard Law School. Prior to joining New England Law School of Law, Professor Engler was the Director of the Housing Law Unit at Brookyln (N.Y.) Legal Service, Corporation B. He received his J.D. from Harvard Law School and his B.A. from Yale University.

The event is free for Philadelphia Bar Association members but advanced registration is required. Lunch will be provided. To register, CLICK HERE.

NEXT MONDAY: NAACP Chair Rosyln Brock to Speak at Quarterly Meeting

Rosyln M. Brock, the youngest person ever to chair the NAACP, will deliver the A. Leon Higginbotham Jr. Memorial Public Interest Lecture at the Philadelphia Bar Association's Quarterly Meeting and Luncheon next Monday, June 28 at noon at The Hyatt at the Bellevue, Broad and Walnut streets.

Registration is $55 for Bar Association members and $60 for non-members. CLICK HERE to register.

Brock succeeded Julian Bond in February 2010 as Chair of the National Board of Directors of the NAACP. Bond announced his retirement from the position last year after 12 years of service.

Over the past 25 years, Brock has served the NAACP in several leadership roles. She made history in February 2001 when she was unanimously elected Vice Chairman of the NAACP National Board of Directors at the age of 35. She was the youngest person and the first woman elected to the post in the organization’s history.

A Diamond Life Member of the NAACP, Brock joined the organization while a freshman at Virginia Union University where she was elected President of the Youth and College Division from the Commonwealth of Virginia.

One year later, she was elected as a Youth Board Member from Region 7, representing the District of Columbia, Maryland and the Commonwealth of Virginia. During her tenure as a Youth Board Member and Vice Chairman of the NAACP Board Health Committee, Brock led the fight to recognize healthcare as a civil rights issue, resulting in the National Board's inclusion of a Health Committee as a Standing Committee for all NAACP Units in the NAACP Constitution.

Brock is Vice President of Advocacy and Government Relations for Bon Secours Health System, Inc. in Marriottsville, Maryland. Prior to working at Bon Secours Health System, she worked 10 years as a Program Officer for Health Programs at the W.K. Kellogg Foundation in Battle Creek, Michigan.

She graduated magna cum laude from Virginia Union University and earned a master's degree in health services administration from George Washington University, an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, and a Master of Divinity degree from the Samuel DeWitt Proctor School of Theology at Virginia Union University.

A committed community advocate who works on behalf of vulnerable populations, Brock has served on the boards of community mental health, family and children's services, senior services and faith-based community ministries. She has been a volunteer elementary school instructor for Junior Achievement and host of Community Voices, a cable access program.

Brock has received numerous healthcare, community service and leadership awards. Her leadership skills have been recognized by several national publications and organizations, including The Network Journal's 40 Under Forty Achievement Award (2004); Ebony magazine's Future Leader Award (1989), and Good Housekeeping magazine's 100 Young Women of Promise Award (1987). She received the Martin Luther King, Jr. Medal for Human Rights from George Washington University, and was voted Outstanding Alumna of Virginia Union University.

She has served as a Young Leaders Fellow for the National Committee on United States-China Relations (2003-05) and Honorary Chairperson of the National Black Family Summit.

Brock created the Leadership 500 Summit in 2005 with several other young adult members of the NAACP. The Summit's goal is to recruit, train and retain a new generation for the NAACP. Leadership 500 has contributed more than $800,000 to the NAACP National Treasury to support 2009 Centennial Activities.

She is a member of several professional and civic organizations, including the Association for Healthcare Philanthropy, American Public Health Association, American College of Healthcare Executives, National Black MBA Association, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., and The Links, Incorporated.
Brock's goal in life is embodied in an African proverb: "Care more than others think is wise, risk more than others think is safe, dream more than others think is practical and expect more than others think is possible."

Also at the luncheon, the Association will present its Sandra Day O'Connor Award to Stephanie Resnick, Chair of the Litigation Department at Fox Rothschild LLP and Chair of the Association's Board of Governors in 2008. Established in 1993 by the Women in the Profession Committee, the Sandra Day 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.

Resnick served as Chair of the Federal Courts Committee in 2004, the liaison between the federal bench and its practitioners. She was responsible for program planning, communication between the bench and bar on strategic initiatives, and professional development and education. In 1997, she served as Chair of the Philadelphia Bar Association's Commission on Judicial Selection and Retention, having served as a member of the Commission from 1995 through 1998. From 1988 through 1994, she was a member of the Investigative Division of the Judicial Commission. In that role, she investigated the background of judicial candidates seeking election and reported those findings to the Judicial Commission.

Resnick was appointed Trustee of the Campaign for Qualified Judges in 1996 and was also appointed by the then president judge of the Court of Common Pleas to the Task Force on Gender Fairness in the Courts. She also served as Co-Chair of the Women's Rights Committee, and as a member of the Professional Responsibility, Professional Guidance and Fee Disputes Committees.

Leading Your Solo and Small Firm, July 15

The Bar Association's Law Practice Management Committee will present "Leading Your Solo and Small Firm: Leadership Skills to Advance Your Business or Your Career," featuring Susan Letterman White, J.D., M.S., Letterman White Consulting, on July 15 at Bar Association headquarters, 1101 Market St., 10th Floor.

Growing your business or advancing your career requires a strategic plan and set of skills that will help you to differentiate your legal services or products from those of everyone else. In this program, participants will learn how to identify their strengths and weakness, locate opportunities and threats, and develop goals and action plans to advance personal career or law firm goals.

The program is free and begins at 12 p.m. Lunch is available for $8.00. CLICK HERE to register.

Register Now for 2010 Bench-Bar and Annual Conference at the Borgata

Register now for the Bar Association's 2010 Bench-Bar and Annual Conference at the Borgata in Atlantic City, N.J. on Friday, Oct. 15 and Saturday, Oct. 16. YLD member costs remain at 2007 prices. Early bird pricing registration is available if tickets purchased by Sept. 17.

Thirteen CLE programs in a variety of practice areas are on tap for the Bench-Bar and Annual Conference. The CLE programs, in which attendees can earn up to eight hours of credit (including the opportunity to earn two ethics credits), will feature judges and some of the city's most well-known practitioners, who will use their expertise and experience to enlighten attendees.

A dramatic re-enactment commemorating the 275th anniversary of Andrew Hamilton's historic 1735 defense of printer John Peter Zenger will be offered for CLE credit as the opening program on Oct. 15. The case established the concept of freedom of the press and coined the term "Philadelphia lawyer."

A state-of-the-court program will also be offered for CLE credit as the closing program on Saturday, Oct. 16. Vice Chancellor John E. Savoth and Board of Governors Vice Chair Regina M. Foley are co-chairs of the 2010 conference.

Full-conference admission is $349 for members and $399 for non-members, if reserved by the early bird deadline of Friday, Sept. 17. For members of the Young Lawyers Division and government and public interest attorneys, admission is only $199. CLICK HERE for a complete registration form and pricing guide.

Hotel reservations must be made separately by calling the Borgata directly at 1-866-692-6742. Guests must reference the Philadelphia Bar Association to receive the special rate. Discounted rooms are available from Thursday, Oct. 14 through Saturday, Oct. 16. if booked by Friday, Sept. 17.