State Bar News, 0816 UTBJ, Vol. 29, No. 4. 52

State Bar News

Vol. 29 No. 4 Pg. 52

Utah Bar Journal

August, 2016

July, 2016

Commission Highlights

The Utah State Bar Board of Commissioners received the following reports and took the actions indicated during the May 20, 2016 Commission Meeting held at the Law & Justice Center in Salt Lake City, Utah. 1. The Bar Commission voted to contribute $1,000 to the Judicial Performance Evaluation Commission for its diversity training program.

2. The Bar Commission voted to award Annette Jarvis and Bruce Maak Lawyer of the Year.

3. The Bar Commission voted to award C. Dane Nolan Judge of the Year.

4. The Bar Commission voted to award the Utah Bar Leadership Academy Committee of the Year.

5. The Bar Commission voted to award the Bankruptcy Section with the Section of the Year Award.

6. The Bar Commission voted to approve the WIPFLi contract for a Bar budget and expense review.

7. The Bar Commission selected Kathi Sjoberg, Sharla Dunroe, Jon Memmott, Rich Gallegos, Benjamin Larsen, and Stewart Young as nominees for the Second Judicial Court Nominating Commission.

8. The Bar Commission voted to approve language for rule to allow admission of undocumented immigrants.

9. The Bar Commission will continue to explore whether ABA electronic job board should be second phase after implementation of the lawyer directory.

The minute text of this and other meetings of the Bar Commission are available at the office of the Executive Director.

2016 Fall Forum Awards

The Board of Bar Commissioners is seeking nominations for the 2016 Fall Forum Awards. These awards have a long history of honoring publicly those whose professionalism, public service, and personal dedication have significantly enhanced the administration of justice, the delivery of legal services, and the building up of the profession. Your award nominations must be submitted in writing to Christy Abad, Executive Secretary, 645 South 200 East, Suite 310, Salt Lake City, UT 84111 or by Friday, October 14, 2016. The award categories include: 1. Distinguished Community Member Award

2. Professionalism Award

3. Outstanding Pro Bono Service Award

View a list of past award recipients at: bar-operations/history-of-utah-state-bar-award-recipients/.

Mandatory Online Licensing

The annual Bar licensing renewal process has started and can be done only online. Sealed cards have been mailed and include a username and password to access the renewal form and the steps to re-license online at No separate form will be sent in the mail. Licensing forms and fees are due July 1 and will be late August 1. Unless the licensing form is completed online and payment received by September 1, your license will be suspended.

To receive support for your online licensing transaction, please contact us either by email to or, call 801-597-7023. Additional information on licensing policies, procedures, and guidelines can be found at

Upon completion of the renewal process, you will receive a licensing confirmation email. Subsequently, you will receive an official licensing receipt along with your renewal sticker, via the U.S. Postal Service.

Thank You to Our 2016 Summer Convention Sponsors & Exhibitors


Babcock Scott & Babcock

Ballard Spahr

Callister Nebeker & McCullough

Christensen & Jensen

Clyde Snow & Sessions

Cohne Kinghorn

DeBry & Associates

Dorsey & Whitney

Durham Jones & Pinegar

Fabian VanCott

Holland & Hart

Jones Waldo Holbrook & McDonough

Kaufman Nichols & Kaufman

Kipp & Christian

Kirton McConkie

LGBT & Allied Lawyers of Utah

Manning Curtis Bradshaw & Bednar

Parr Brown Gee & Loveless

Parsons Behle & Latimer

Prince Yeates & Geldzahler

Randy S. Kester

Ray Quinney & Nebeker

Richards Brandt Miller & Nelson

Snell & Wilmer

Snow Christensen & Martineau

Stoel Rives

Strong & Hanni

Thorpe North & Western


Utah Minority Bar Association

Women Lawyers of Utah

Workman Nydegger

Young Lawyers Division


AEI Corporation

Blomquist Hale Consulting

–Lawyers Assistance Program

BYU Law School

CHOICE Humanitarian

Decipher Forensics

Green Filing

Lawyers Helping Lawyers




National Affinity Services

New Lawyer Training Program

Sage Forensic Accounting, Inc.

S.J. Quinney College of Law


Utah Bar Foundation

2016 Law Day Awards


Recognizing people providing donated legal services to those most in need.

Law Firm: Strindberg & Scholnick

Young Lawyer: Sue Crismon

Student: Adam Saxby


Young Lawyers of the Year: Kat Judd, Kate Conyers

Liberty Bell: Angie Leedy


Law-related youth education: Thomas Richard Davis

See details at

WLU Congratulates Woman Lawyer of the Year Joan Watt

Woman Lawyers of Utah (WLU) has awarded the 2016 Christine Durham Woman Lawyer of the Year Award to Joan Watt, Chief Appellate Attorney at the Salt Lake Legal Defender Association (LDA). WLU received nominations for Ms. Watt from dozens of colleagues throughout the legal community, who call her a “fearless and peerless appellate advocate.” Ms. Watt argues often in Utah’s appellate courts, and her impressive success rate amply demonstrates her abilities. Her name appears on 215 Utah appellate cases dating back to 1987. In 2015 alone, she won four appeals in a row, a significant achievement for any attorney let alone a criminal defense attorney on appeal.

Ms. Watt is a steadfast and zealous advocate for her clients, no matter the adversity or obstacles facing her. She is known for her ability to deftly explain the hardest facts and the most complex legal issues, and for being a superlative oral advocate. She writes persuasive and compelling appellate briefs better and faster than most, even while maintaining significant administrative responsibilities at LDA. Joan has also long been an active member of the Supreme Court’s Advisory Committee on the Rules of Appellate Procedure, and she is its current chair.

In February of this year, Ms. Watt achieved the dream of all appellate advocates by arguing LDA’s first case before the United States Supreme Court. Despite numerous inquiries from large Washington D.C. and New York law firms angling to take the case, Ms. Watt’s lifelong career as a public defender doing largely appellate work prepared her better than anyone to defend the Utah Supreme Court’s decision to suppress evidence under the exclusionary. Reporting on the oral argument, which brought out fierce debate amongst the justices, Slate Magazine noted that Ms. Watt “project[ed] an aura of stoic patience,” and calmly explained the implications of the outcome of the case on minority communities. Mark Joseph Stern, The First Day of the New Supreme Court Without Antonin Scalia on the bench, the court’s liberals spoke up and won out, slate (Feb. 23, 2016, 7:30 AM), supreme_court_dispatches/2016/02/in_the_oral_arguments_for_ utah_v_strieff_the_supreme_court_s_liberals_spoke.html. In the words of her appellate colleague, Teresa Welch, “Once again, Joan showed us all how to fight the good fight…Her hard work and dedication to this case manifested as true virtuosity in the courtroom.”

Ms. Watt’s colleagues also note that aside from her laudable legal abilities, her most remarkable Volume 29 No. 4 quality is her attitude. After many years of defending some of the most challenging cases, Ms...

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