Reflecting on a Year of Change
As the summer winds down, I am able to reflect on my first year as executive director of the Alabama State Bar. It's been a year of change for me as I've wound down my law practice and taken on a role that is outside my comfort zone. The challenges I've faced have allowed me to better understand the makeup of this bar. No two lawyers are alike and harnessing that idea is crucial to the development of this organization. We've made headway during my first year in getting out the message: lawyers matter, the courts matter and this profession adds economic value to every single community in the state.
Last year, President Augusta Dowd, other bar leaders and I rolled out the State of the Bar, which, in broad terms, entirely replaces "Roadshows," but, more specifically, offers a program in which the bar president and I visit with local bar associations across the state. We've been able to interact with members face to face, hear their concerns and, most importantly, be present in communities where "the bar"carries only regulatory meaning.
With President Dowd's support, we decided to highlight the growing issue of funding the judicial branch. This topic impacts every lawyer and judge in Alabama. We feel that it is absolutely critical that the legal community is aware of the judicial branch's lack of funding, the fees associated with the courts and where they go, the positive economic impact the courts have on their local communities and how lawyers can be heard in the legislature. At this point, we have visited with 53 local bars and plan to visit them all. For those of you who missed us, we encourage you to visit www.alabar.org/resources/judicial-court-information/toaccess various resources containing judicial information. In addition to the county-by-county...