2009 has been quite a year for the legal industry. In many ways, though, as I review the issues of Strategies that I have had the privilege of working on, a figurative phoenix has risen from the ashes. While our daily conversations have included references to reductions in force, law firm dissolutions and "professionals in transition," the LMA members who have contributed their expertise to our publication have demonstrated that legal marketers are not only resilient but innovative. They are not only thought leaders and can be among the strongest leaders at their firms.
When I was the New England Chapter president in 2008, I was often asked if it was difficult to manage the increasing challenges of my "day job" and serve as the leader of an organization comprising members all facing similar challenges. Now as a co-executive editor of Strategies, the question is still often asked. While there is never enough time during the day to finish everything I might like to, my answer to that question then--and now--is a resounding "no." This is the time when organizations such as LMA are more critical to our collective success than ever before. Perhaps like no other time before in our professional careers, we need the exchange of information, the sharing of best practices, the building of skills, and sometimes the friend and shoulder to cry on. And LMA delivers these things. The countless hours of volunteerism that so many members have contributed have resulted in the association we have today, and with SmithBucklin's guidance and expertise I am sure that the future pages of Strategies will continue to reflect the resilience, innovation and leadership that is at the core of our membership.
As we're busy preparing our budgets and business plans to successfully transition into 2010, Strategies is also preparing for a transition of its own. It has been my pleasure to work this year with two people who exemplify the characteristics referenced above to a T. Add a dose of patience (I'm still always late with this monthly contribution) and an excellent sense of humor, and you have Jennifer Smuts and Amy Stickel. They are truly both experts at what they do and have worked tirelessly for years to produce the very best journal possible. Their leadership has gotten us this far, and I will miss working with them both. I...