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Bar News - March 23, 2007


NHBA Board of Governors Candidates in 2007-08 Election

Ellen L. Arnold

President-Elect

 

“This past year, I have been privileged to serve as vice president of the New Hampshire Bar Association. This work has been interesting and exciting. In addition, I have worked on the Status of the Profession Commission and Work-Life Creed Committee which has provided wonderful opportunities to meet with members of the Bar, better understand the diverse challenges we face, and work on recommendations to improve the delivery of legal services, the vibrancy of the profession, and enhance the quality of life and practice of its members. At the same time, other commissions, most notably the Citizens Commission, have generated valuable information which will influence the practice of law and administration of justice in New Hampshire for many years to come.

 

There is much work to do. My two primary issues of focus are enhancing member services and providing education regarding the administration of justice. Bar leadership has devoted significant effort to more fully understanding the needs of our members. Some concerns expressed by members which can be addressed by the Association are the need for expanded and more affordable CLEs, particularly on issues related to the provision of pro bono service and law practice management. In addition, the Bar Association must continue to work in conjunction with the courts to make the delivery of legal services more efficient, timely, and predictable without sacrificing the quality of justice.

 

As president-elect of the New Hampshire Bar Association, I hope to make a positive difference for my colleagues in the New Hampshire Bar.”

 

James J. Tenn, Jr.

Vice President

 

“I am seeking to serve as vice president of the New Hampshire Bar Association because I am committed to ensuring that the Bar Association remains an effective organization for both attorneys and citizens in New Hampshire.

 

The practice of law in New Hampshire is exciting. The law is ever-changing and the profession is continually examining innovative approaches to our system of justice. At the same time, the demands of law practice have never been greater. Representation of our clients requires that as lawyers we keep abreast of the substantive and procedural changes in the law and that we navigate the technological changes in practice. In addition, New Hampshire lawyers are called upon to give of their time and talent in pro bono matters, public service positions, and charitable work—things so many New Hampshire lawyers do without hesitation. Despite the strong tradition of service here in New Hampshire, lawyers and the legal profession often confront public scrutiny and skepticism.

 

Amidst this time of change and challenge, the Bar Association serves lawyers and members of the public alike. For lawyers, no matter the area of the law in which we practice and no matter the size of our firms, the Bar Association helps to unite and support us. The Bar Association provides the many educational and developmental programs that we as lawyers need to continue providing high-level legal services. In addition, the Bar Association promotes professionalism—both formally and informally—among its members, and plays a critical role as an intermediary between the members of the Bar and the Judiciary.

 

Our unified Bar Association also coordinates the majority of pro bono services in our state. The Bar Association is an essential resource and liaison to the communities in which we work and live. For members of the public, the Bar Association provides valuable educational information about the legal system in New Hampshire, as well as helping to connect citizens with attorneys who provide pro bono and reduced-fee services.

 

For these reasons, I have made Bar Association work a priority in my practice. I presently serve as governor-at-large to the Board of Governors. I have previously served as the Hillsborough County delegate to the Bar Association and have chaired the New Lawyers Committee. During my service to the Bar Association, I have been involved in a variety of projects, including the New Lawyer Mentor Program and Outreach Programs sponsored by the Bar Association. I have been impressed by the many skilled attorneys and dedicated persons who have worked to advance the cause of justice in our state.

 

I am seeking the office of vice president of the Bar Association because the mission of our unified Bar is critically important. At this time in the profession, we certainly are confronted with challenges; but also, we have great opportunities. The Bar Association must make certain that it continues to evolve so that it can remain useful and productive for its members. Equally as important, the Bar Association is challenged to be an ambassador of the profession and to be a meaningful community resource. I am committed to helping the Bar Association fully meet those challenges in the years ahead, and I look forward to creating opportunities that will enhance the practice of law in our state.”

 

Gretchen L. Witt

Secretary

 

A graduate of Boston University School of Law, Gretchen Witt joined the NH Bar in 1987. Since 1991, she has been chief of the Civil Division of the US Attorney’s Office, New Hampshire, with the exception of six months as the attorney general-appointed and then court-appointed US Attorney for the District of New Hampshire. Witt was also a member of the US Attorney General’s Advisory from January 2003 to January 2005 and has been chair of the Civil Chiefs’ Working Group, an adjunct to the Attorney General’s Advisory Committee, since April, 2002. She first joined the Department of Justice in 1982 and moved to the state in 1986. She is a member of numerous Bar and court committees.

 

“As the current secretary of the Bar Association, I am honored to have the opportunity to seek the position again. It has been, and will remain, an interesting and vital time to participate in the leadership of this important voice for lawyers in New Hampshire.

 

As a government lawyer, I hope to continue presenting the concerns and views of the public sector to my fellow governors on the board. This past year, I had the opportunity to co-chair, with Greg Robbins, a Public Sector/Public Interest Lawyer Task Force appointed by Past-President Richard Uchida and current President Richard McNamara. The specific charge of the task force was ‘to determine if there are services, activities, governance changes, financial changes or other work which the New Hampshire Bar Association should undertake to make membership in our bar more valuable for lawyers who practice in the public sector or perform public interest work.’

 

A dedicated group of current or past PS/PI lawyers worked on the task force and recently forwarded a set of recommendations to the Board of Governors for consideration and, hopefully, implementation. Some of the recommendations, such as provision of CLEs targeted toward PS/PI lawyers, are easy, while others, such as issues involving the Public Protection Fund, are much more difficult. I hope to continue my service on the Board of Governors to assist in the full and fair consideration of these recommendations, which concern matters of interest and importance to PS/PI lawyers, who comprise approximately 20 percent of the active bar membership.”

 

Robert R. Howard, III

Treasurer

 

Rob Howard graduated from Boston University with a J.D. in 1969 and was admitted to the NH Bar in 1969; he has been the NHBA treasurer since 1993. He is also a member of the NHBA Finance Committee and the Technology Task Force; he has been a member of various NHBA sections and on faculty panels of a number of CLEs. He is a former Merrimack County governor and governor-at-large on the NHBA Board of Governors. He served nine years as a part-time district court judge and was the recipient of the NHBA President’s Award for Outstanding Professionalism in 1996. He co-teaches the Law Practice Management session of the required Practical Skills course offered semi-annually to new admittees.

 

“I have served with pleasure for some years as treasurer of the Bar Association. Tom Manter is the director of finance and provides the board with regular detailed reports. I review these with him and with the board Committee on Administration on a regular basis. The annual budget is developed by Tom and the Finance Committee, of which I am a member. My role in all of this is to watchdog the process, and serve as facilitator. My qualifications are my experience with Bar affairs, and my pleasure in participating in an association that does so much for me and other small law offices. Whether the fact that I am unopposed signifies approbation or apathy, I am pleased to serve for another year.”

 

Marilyn Billings McNamara

Governor-at-Large

 

A graduate of Franklin Pierce Law Center, Marilyn McNamara joined the NH Bar in 1977. She remained at the school for a year following graduation to assist in the launching of what was then the Family and Housing Law Clinic. She was in private practice in Lebanon from 1978 until a move to southern New Hampshire led to her 2001 decision to leave private practice and become the current executive director of the Legal Advice and Referral Center (LARC).

 

In the past, she has served on the Judicial Council and on Gov. Jeanne Shaheen’s Judicial Selection Commission. During the course of her career she has served on such NHBA committees as Continuing Legal Education, Professionalism and the Delivery of Legal Services. Since her admission to the NHBA, she has been a member of CLE faculty panels and other forum presentations. She served on the NHBA Pro Bono Governing Board for 10 years, first as a member and then as chair, and she was an active Pro Bono lawyer while in private practice.

 

McNamara is a former governor-at-large on the NHBA Board of Governors and in that role also served on the Board of the NH Bar Foundation. She is a member of the Family Law Section. She was awarded the L. Jonathan Ross for Outstanding Commitment to Legal Services for the Poor in 1996. She co-teaches the Family Law session of the required Practical Skills course offered semi-annually to new admittees. She is a Mock Trial Coach for Souhegan High School and an adjunct faculty member at Pierce Law, where she has recently collaborated with the Daniel Webster Scholar program to bring law students to LARC to acquire interview and practice skills and provide telephone advocacy services to low-income clients. She has served on various New Hampshire commissions concerning the provision of legal services to low-income clients.

 

“I am honored to have the opportunity to seek the position of governor-at-large of the NHBA Board of Bar Governors. Serving lawyers through service to the Bar Association has been among the most rewarding aspects of my career.

 

I have personal experience with the challenges of small-firm practice. I understand the difficulty of balancing time, money, professional obligations and family—difficulties that are also faced by lawyers in any practice setting, including those in the public service area of law where I now practice. In the past few years, watching one of my own begin his journey into law, I have also learned about the challenges faced by new lawyers who are now forced to make career and family decisions based in significant part on the amount of debt they must bear for the honor and privilege of becoming members of our profession. These and other concerns, including the demands of our now 24-hour world; a court system slowed by old systems and new pro se litigants; changing practice rules that will ultimately change the practice of law and a growing number of lawyers looking to the future of the legal profession and seeing nothing there.

 

As a member of the NHBA Board of Governors I will represent my constituents—the lawyers of New Hampshire, from new to experienced, in their diverse practices and professional settings and geographic locales. We need to focus on today’s real world—and a vision of tomorrow that includes our profession: ‘As the world changes, we must change, but we should not remain silent about our fundamental role in the preservation of a safe, free and open society.’ (The Value of the Legal Profession, NHBA Board of Bar Governors, 2006.)”

 

Lawrence A. Vogelman

Governor-at-Large

 

“I have been privileged these past three years to serve as a governor-at-large of the New Hampshire Bar Association. I ask for your support for another three-year term. I am a partner at Nixon, Raiche, Vogelman, Barry & Slawsky in Manchester. My practice concentrates in criminal defense and plaintiff’s civil rights, medical malpractice, employment, professional negligence, personal injury and workers’ compensation litigation.

 

This is a crucial time for both our profession and our association. The world is changing and unless we, as lawyers, change with it, we will be left behind. Our Bar Association must assist each of us in making that transition.

 

I am part of the ‘Woodstock Generation’…a child of the ’60s. I became a lawyer because I wanted to change the world. After practicing law for 35 years, I still believe that we, as lawyers, can change the world. We do so every day, one case at a time. Unfortunately, the problems the public faces today, and we confront on their behalf, are as serious as any time in our history.

 

There are inadequate resources to provide representation for those who need it. The Public Defender, Legal Assistance, LARC and the Bar’s Pro Bono program do an incredible job in attempting to provide representation for those among us who are legally ‘indigent.’ Their resources are limited, however.

 

Also, the unfortunate reality is that there are a growing number of people who, while not technically indigent, can never afford our services. This has resulted in an increasing number of cases heard in our courts with pro se litigants. We as lawyers, and we as a Bar Association, must make every effort to address this growing problem.

 

It is also becoming harder and harder for lawyers to compete in the marketplace. Our Bar Association has been making efforts to address this issue, and must continue to do so. The Bar Association must be relevant to all members of the Bar. Unfortunately, some segments of the Bar feel that we have not met their expectations. If I am given the opportunity to continue to serve on the Board of Governors, I will make every effort to always consider what our Association can do to assist lawyers in solo or small practices, those of us who practice in more rural areas, public-interest lawyers, and in-house counsel. Each of these groups has problems and issues that are different from those being faced by lawyers in larger firms. As a Bar Association, we must do a better job to address those issues.

 

I am proud to be a lawyer. Unfortunately, not everyone recognizes the positive role lawyers play in today’s society. I believe that sounding that horn is one of the prime missions of our Bar Association. In my practice, I try to give a voice to the voiceless, power to the powerless, and hope for those who have given up hope. I would like to continue that same commitment on behalf of our Association, on behalf of the lawyers in New Hampshire, and on behalf of the clients we serve. I will be privileged to have your vote.”

 

Paul C. Remus

Governor-at-Large

 

Editor’s Note:The statement of Paul C. Remus, a candidate for governor-at-large in the 2007-08 Board of Governors’ election, appears below. Although he provided the statement to the NH Bar Association on time, due to an editorial error, it was inadvertently left out of the March 23 issue of NH Bar News.


I graduated from Yale College with a B.S. in physics in 1967 and from the University of Michigan Law School with a J.D. in 1971. I joined Devine, Millimet & Branch in 1977, where I have practiced--at one time or another--general corporate, banking, mergers and acquisitions, securities, municipal bond and patent law. I have been a bar examiner; the founder and first president of the Intellectual Property Section; and a member of the CLE Committee, Publications Committee, and Work-Life Task Force.

My goal in running for the Board of Governors is two-fold. First, I would like to expand the efforts of the Bar in supporting its members in their out-of-court roles, for example, appearing before state agencies and municipal boards. Second, while law is both a business and a profession, I would like to emphasize the latter. We have an obligation to the citizens of New Hampshire to promote civic education and to perform public service through pro bono activities and supporting a defined right to counsel in civil matters, paid for by the state. We also have an obligation to each other. When I came to New Hampshire, it was not uncommon to hear a lawyer talking about having fun practicing law. It is now increasingly rare. By emphasizing our professionalism, we can make our interactions with each other easier.

 

Maria Gavin

Cheshire County Governor

 

“I was born in Massachusetts, but grew up in Mason, New Hampshire. I received my B.A. from Holy Cross College in Worcester, Mass., my M.B.A. from the University of Massachusetts, Boston and my J.D. from the University of Maine School of Law. I came directly out of law school to work at Bradley, Burnett, Kenyon, Fernald & Green in Keene in 2005. I am truly happy to have ended up in this firm and in Keene.

 

I have been asked to run for the Board of Governors as the Cheshire County representative by the current representative, Mary Lou Caffrey. I was asked to run because I am a new and energetic attorney. I would be happy to serve Cheshire County for two years by bringing the concerns and comments of the Cheshire County Bar to the Board and working on issues that face lawyers as a whole in New Hampshire.”

 

Quentin Blaine

Grafton County Governor

            “I have been a member of the NHBA for 20 years. I started my career working for Peter Marsh in Concord in 1986. I moved to Plymouth in 1989 where I became a partner with Bill Hopkins prior to starting a solo practice there in 1995. In 2001, I began nearly four years of tenure as clerk of Concord District Court. On leaving the court system, I practiced a short while with Hebert & Uchida in Concord before deciding to end my commute and re-open my solo practice in Plymouth, where I live.

            If elected, this would be my first opportunity to participate in the governance of the Bar Association. I can bring to the Board the perspective of having worked in the court system and of having practiced law in small firms and as a solo practitioner. I will participate fully in resolving matters before the board and I will be mindful that I represent Grafton County lawyers in doing so.”

 

Robert T. Mittelholzer

Rockingham County Governor

 

“I would be very pleased to represent the lawyers of Rockingham County as a returning member of the Board of Governors. Much like its membership, the New Hampshire Bar Association will be challenged over the coming years to maximize every dollar of revenue so as to best advance the interests of its membership consistent with its mission. I will do my best to work with the present and incoming officers and members of the board to help assure that our association remains more than relevant and useful but truly integral to our professional lives as New Hampshire lawyers.”

 

Timothy Harrington

Strafford County Governor

 

(The Strafford County representative is running to fill the remaining year of an unexpired term.)

 

Timothy M. Harrington is a shareholder/director at the law firm of Shaheen & Gordon. His practice focuses on state and federal criminal defense. He is a graduate of Franklin Pierce Law Center and the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Harrington is admitted to the state and federal Bars in New Hampshire, Maine and Massachusetts.

            “It would be my honor to continue serving as the Strafford County Governor. It is my hope that I would bring the ideas, questions and concerns of the Strafford County Bar to the Board of Governors for consideration and action. As the practice of law continues to change it presents new opportunities and challenges for lawyers. As a member of the Board of Governors and a member of the Bar I want to make sure that our Bar Association continues to respond to these opportunities and challenges.”

 

David P. Carlson

Coos County Governor

 

David Carlson graduated from the University of Maine in 1980 and from Franklin Pierce Law Center (J.D.) in 1983. He has held the following positions: Law Office of Thomas J. Cote, Associate 1984 to 1991; Bergeron, Hanson & Bornstein; Associate 1991 to 1996; Bergeron, Hanson, Bornstein & Carlson, Partner 1996 to 2001; Coos County Superior Court, Clerk of Court, 2001 to the present.

 

In addition, he has been a member of the NH Bar since 1983; a member of the Coos County Bar Association, 1984 to the present, serving as vice-president in the past and now as president and treasurer (since 2001).

 

“I have lived and worked in Coos County since graduating from law school in 1983, and have been the Clerk of the Coos County Superior Court for the last six years.

 

Early on, I learned that the geographical distances between the courts and the relatively few lawyers ‘north of the notches’ makes Coos County a unique place to practice law. Because of these differences, I do not believe that statewide solutions to areas of concern always work in this county. The need for more judge time and/or a reapportionment of judge time in all levels of court, improvements to court facilities in Berlin and Colebrook and the inability of lawyers to obtain live CLE credits locally are three important issues that should be addressed. I look forward to representing the interests of the lawyers who practice in Coos County at the Board of Governors.”

 

Andrew M. Mierins

Merrimack County Governor

 

Andrew (“Andy”) M. Mierins graduated with a B.A. in history and political science from the University of New Hampshire in 1989 and received his J.D. in 2003 from Franklin Pierce Law Center. He was admitted to the New Hampshire Bar and the U.S. District Court for the District of New Hampshire in October 2003. He is an associate with Crisp & Associates in Concord. He resides in Northfield with his wife Gail and their two sons, Matthew and Nikolas. He is member of the Merrimack County Bar and serves on the New Hampshire Bar Association’s Board of Governors, New Lawyers’ Committee and the Law-Related Education Committee. He served as a member of the New Hampshire Supreme Court’s Commission on the Status of the Legal Profession. He is also a member of the Town of Northfield’s Conservation Commission and an alternate to its Planning Board.

 

“I have been honored to serve the past two years as the Merrimack County Governor. During this time the New Hampshire Bar Association has gone through many changes, one of the most significant being the relocation to Pillsbury Street, which has helped expand services to the Association’s members. Over the past two years, one of my goals has been to make membership in the New Hampshire Bar Association relevant and important to every member, from the newly admitted to the seasoned attorney and to those in private practice as well as those in public service. While great strides have been made to reach out to all attorneys, much work remains to be accomplished and I look forward to the opportunity to continue working on this important issue.”

 

If you have any questions about the balloting process, contact Assistant Executive Director Denice DeStefano at 603-224-6942 or by e-mail at ddestefano@nhbar.org.

 

 

Slate of Candidates for the NHBA 2007 Elections

 

President-Elect:           Ellen L. Arnold

Vice-President:            James J. Tenn, Jr.

Secretary:                    Gretchen L. Witt

Treasurer:                    Robert R. Howard, III

 

Governor-at-Large:

(3-year term)                  Lawrence A. Vogelman

                                    Paul C. Remus

                                    Marilyn B. McNamara

 

County Governor:       

(2-year term)

Cheshire                       Maria P. Gavin

Coos                             David P. Carlson

Grafton                          Quentin Blaine

Merrimack                     Andrew M. Mierins

Rockingham                  Robert T. Mittelholzer

Strafford                        Timothy M. Harrington

 

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