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Bar News - April 4, 2008

President's Perspective: March Madness–Bar Association Style


Periodically, I encourage members to become involved in the New Hampshire Bar Association, either on committees or as members of the Board of Governors. The Board of Governors has the opportunity to participate in a wide variety of interesting meetings. The month of March provides a good example.

On March 4, 2008, the Officers of the Association met with Chief Justice Broderick and the members of the New Hampshire Supreme Court. The meeting was an opportunity for the Court to bring matters to the Association’s attention and for the Association to address certain issues and members’ concerns with the courts. Meeting with the Supreme Court is important to maintaining continued communication between the Association and the Court.

Chief Justice Broderick reported that the revised Rule 170 is going well and in use. Karen Borgstrom continues to encourage members to sign up as paid and/or volunteer mediators.

The Association discussed Family Court issues with the Court. Chief Justice Broderick encouraged the officers to bring members’ concerns with the Family Court to the attention of Judge Kelly and to Karen Borgstrom. First Appearance Hearings and mediators continue to be sources of concern to members in the Family Court realm.

Justice Dalianis discussed Rules Committee changes and issues. Once again she stressed the importance of members’ comments when there are proposed rule changes. One way the Rules Committee listens to the concerns of members is by having a comment period. So often the revised rule is adopted and then the comments arrive; at that point it is too late.

The continued cooperation and meetings with the Supreme Court are vital to members’ ability to communicate with the Court. Chief Justice Broderick and the members of the Supreme Court are committed to listening to the concerns of members and encouraging a dialogue between the Association and the Court.

On March 27, the Board of Governors and the Finance Committee met for a day-long session to address the Association’s annual budget. The Finance Committee has reviewed and crunched the numbers and has developed recommendations based on the annual budget. Included in the Finance Committee’s consideration for the recommendations were the Bar’s resources of staff, funds and commitments. As the Board reviews and discusses the recommendations and the budget, we will be asking for your input and comment.

Also, on March 27, the Board of Governors hosted a luncheon at the Bar Center honoring the employees of the Association who had worked there for 15 to 25 years. These are truly milestones. It is hard to believe that the New Hampshire Bar Association has been in existence since 1873, when it was first incorporated.

Honored for 15 or more years of service were: Ruth-Ellen Demers (1988), Cheryl Moore (1988); Diane McMahon (1990); Denice DeStefano (1991); and Lee Jones (1993).

Of special note are Executive Director Jeannine McCoy and Donna Parker, who both joined the Bar staff in 1982.

The Bar Association is fortunate to have such a dedicated and hardworking staff serving it.

We will continue to keep you updated and informed. As always, if you have questions or comments, be sure to contact Executive Director Jeannine McCoy or myself.

Eleanor Wm. Dahar, of the Dahar Professional Association in Manchester, is the 2007-2008 President of the New Hampshire Bar Association. Contact her at

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