Bar News - July 18, 2008
Bar Foundation News: Four Nominees Vie for Open Term on IOLTA Grants Committee
By: Susan Noon
The New Hampshire Bar Foundation is pleased to announce four candidates for the open term on the IOLTA (Interest on Lawyers Trust Accounts) Grants Committee: attorneys Ruth Ansell, Don Hebert, Mark McCue, and Daniel Schwarz. The IOLTA Grants Committee is responsible for reviewing IOLTA Grant applications and making funding recommendations to the Bar Foundation board of directors, which then makes the final decision on grant awards.
The Bar Foundationís IOLTA Grants support non-profit organizations that provide civil legal services to the disadvantaged, law-related education programs, and other projects approved by the NH Supreme Court. Ballots are mailed in mid-July to New Hampshire attorneys who participate in IOLTA. Deadline for votes via signed ballots is 5:00 p.m. on Thursday, July 31, 2008. If you do not receive a ballot and are eligible to vote, please contact Mary White by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or call her at 603-715-3210.
Below are the candidatesí statements and biographies:
Ruth Tolf Ansell
|Ruth Tolf Ansell
I am pleased to be nominated to serve on the IOLTA Grants Committee. Although I have been a supporter and participant of the IOLTA program for many years, I became more committed to this program during the years when I served on the New Hampshire Bar Foundation Board (2001-2007).
As the treasurer of the Bar Foundation Board, I became acutely aware of the importance of IOLTA funding for the New Hampshire non-profit organizations that provide civil legal services to the disadvantaged, to law-related education and to similar projects, as approved by the Supreme Court, and which promote the law in New Hampshire. I learned that IOLTA funds support desperately needed programs that generally cannot secure sufficient funding from other resources. I would be honored to serve on the committee which reviews competitive grant requests and recommends IOLTA grants to these deserving programs.
Ruth Tolf Ansell has practiced estate planning, estate and trust administration, probate, and related tax planning in New Hampshire since 1981. Ruth graduated from Fordham Law School (JD 1981) and received her Masterís Degree in Taxation from Boston University School of Law (LLM Tax 1988). She practices in Bedford at the law firm of Ansell & Anderson, P.A. Ruth was elected as a fellow of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel in 1995, and served as the state chair for New Hampshire from 1999 through 2004.
She is a member of the New Hampshire and American Bar Associations and the New Hampshire Estate Planning Council. She served on the board of the New Hampshire Bar Foundation from 2001 through 2007 and as the Foundationís treasurer from 2002 through 2007. She is currently on the board of the Granite State Ambassadors and the Bedford Land Trust. She is a frequent lecturer for the New Hampshire Bar Association on trust and estate matters.
Throughout my career I have worked for the constituencies served by our IOLTA funds, both by providing direct representation and by serving on the boards and committees which guide the programs. I will apply the lessons learned from these experiences when making the difficult choices required of the IOLTA Grants Committee.
Representing those who are unable to afford a lawyer has always been a significant part of my practice. I have twice been the recipient of the [NHBA] Presidentís Award for pro bono service at the county level, and have received the L. Jonathan Ross Award for Outstanding Civil Legal Services to the Poor. I have served on the DOVE panel since the program was founded. I have been a coach and judge for LREís mock trial program, both at the high school and grade school levels.
As a member of the Bar Associationís Board of Governors and various Bar committees, I have seen first-hand the work done by the organizations supported by our IOLTA funds. These funds represent the spirit of giving through pro bono service that distinguishes our profession from all others. I look forward to serving on the IOLTA Grants Committee on behalf of all of our members.
I have been in private practice for 20 years in Grafton and Merrimack Counties. I have served as the Grafton County representative to the NH Bar Association Board of Governors and as an at-large member of the board. I have served on many bar committees and participated in many pro bono and Law Related Education programs.
I graduated from Dartmouth College in 1975 and from Vermont Law School in 1989. I was a sole practitioner in Bristol, New Hampshire, from 1992 until 1999 when Richard Uchida and I formed Hebert & Uchida, PLLC. After a sabbatical in 2007, during which I attended Flight Safety Academy in Vero Beach, Florida, and the American Airlines training facility in Dallas, Texas, Maria Dolder and I formed the firm of Hebert & Dolder in Concord.
My interest in serving on the New Hampshire Bar Foundationís IOLTA Grants Committee stems from my belief that legal services and the justice system must be made available to all members of society, and from my understanding that there are many disadvantaged and underserved citizens in New Hampshire.
Through my involvement with many community charitable organizations and particularly my service on a special commission appointed by Governor Lynch to study the Area Agencies and the delivery of services to the developmentally disabled, I have observed both the need for legal services to the disadvantaged and the myriad benefits which result from the provision of such services. Having practiced for 23 years as a corporate and health care attorney, and having counseled many non-profits, I am convinced that non-profit organizations are a vital vehicle for the delivery of services to the neediest members of our society as well as critical "front-line" advocates for the underserved.
I welcome the opportunity to foster and assist the legal services and educational efforts provided by New Hampshireís non-profit organizations. As a business attorney and former founding trustee and chairman of a non-profit organization, I believe I have the necessary skills to identify those grant applications which will leverage IOLTA grant dollars through well-constructed and innovative programs. If appointed to the committee, I will couple these skills with an eagerness to promote and fulfill the Bar Foundationís mission.
Mark is a partner in the regional law firm of Hinckley, Allen & Snyder LLP. His practice focuses in the area of corporate law including mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures and contractual relationships, health care, corporate governance, commercial real estate transactions, employment relations, lending, public finance and tax-exempt issues. Mark advises closely-held businesses and non-profit organizations in a broad array of industries, including state-mandated health insurance organizations, hospitals and physician groups regarding state and federal regulatory compliance.
Mark received his A.B. from Brown University and his J.D. and LL.M. in Taxation from Boston University School of Law. He has been a member of the New Hampshire Bar Association since 1985, and currently is listed in Woodward/White Inc.ís Best Lawyers in America and in New Hampshireís Leading Corporate/M&A Lawyers published by Chambers USA.
Markís civic involvement includes serving as a director of the American Cancer Society, Innisfree Cancer Help and the Concord Area Trust for Community Housing, and an appointment in 2005 to the Governorís Commission to Study Area Agencies and Their Role in Providing Services to [Developmentally Disabled Persons] in New Hampshire.
Daniel P. Schwarz
Daniel P. Schwarz
I wish to serve on the IOLTA Grants Committee because it fosters the public service goals of the Bar and the state by encouraging non-profit organizations to provide new ways to bring civil legal services to the disadvantaged and promotes law related education. I am a believer in increasing the access to the justice system. I have, since I was admitted to the Bar in 1985, been a regular participant in the Pro Bono Referral system.
I am also very familiar with the workings of non-profits. I am the chair of the board of trustees of Families First. Families First, which provides pre-natal care, primary care, healthcare for the homeless, dental care and family support is dependent on grants for a large part of its funding. Through this, I believe I bring a perspective that will be helpful to the Committee.
The IOLTA system allows each bar member to contribute indirectly toward this end through the collection of interest on trust accounts. I would like to work more directly toward that end by continuing the excellent work that the committee has performed over the years and exploring ways in which grants might be made more accessible to new programs and to insure that existing programs that receive the grants are working to keep their organizations responsive to the needs of their constituents.
Attorney Schwarz graduated from Northwestern University in 1979 with a degree in English Literature. After working in the newspaper industry he went to law school at Boston University, graduating in 1985. He has been a member of the NH Bar since 1985 and a member of the Maine Bar since 1990. He received his legal training at Sheehan Phinney Bass + Green where he worked from 1985 until 1998 when he formed Flygare Schwarz & Closson with Tom Flygare and Tom Closson. The firm concentrates in employment law.
Schwarz is a trained Rule 170 mediator who regularly serves in Rockingham County. He is also approved as a mediator for the U.S. District Court for the District of NH in employment matters. In addition to his work at Families First, Schwarz is on the Board of Trustees of the Friends of The Music Hall and is the Assistant Umpire-in-Chief for the Portsmouth Little League.