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Bar News - January 18, 2013

Presidentís Perspective: New Developments in the New Year


Lawrence A. Vogelman
As we start a new year, I would like to share with all of you two things that your Association will be doing this coming year.

First, I want to report on one of the initiatives I spoke about when I first became Bar president. With the advent of admission by motion, the demographics of the NH Bar have changed drastically. Of the 5,142 active-status members of our Association, 1,681 (or 32 percent) have their primary offices out of state. When I first became involved with the Bar leadership, I committed myself to make our Association relevant for all its members. There was a perception, albeit inaccurate, that the Bar only paid attention to lawyers in the Merrimack Valley Corridor or the Seacoast. Also, some expressed the opinion that the Bar was not as relevant to public service attorneys, sole practitioners, or small-firm attorneys. Over the past few years, more and more of our energy has been directed toward making sure that every Bar member receives more "bang for the buck." For solo practitioners or members of small firms, Casemaker alone provides value far in excess of our dues. Additionally, there is now a public service member on our Board of Governors.

We need to take the initiative, now, to better serve our out-of-state members. We are considering a bylaws change to create an out-of-state seat on the Board of Governors. In the meantime, I implore any of you who have ideas as to how we can better serve our out-of-state members to contact me.

Second, your Association has lined up a day of top-notch programming for the 2013 Midyear Meeting on March 8. The day kicks off with a morning CLE led by Talmage Boston, a Dallas attorney and national speaker who will present "Lessons from Legal Icons," a lively program that illustrates traits of professionalism for both trial and transactional attorneys using examples from the careers of famous lawyers Abraham Lincoln, Atticus Finch, James Baker and Leon Jaworski.

At our Honors & Awards luncheon, we will hear from the Honorable Marcia Cooke, judge for the US District Court in the Southern District of Florida. She has been a legal assistance lawyer, public defender, federal prosecutor, federal magistrate and is also the first African-American woman judge in the Southern District of Florida, and is a longtime friend. At the luncheon, she will join us in honoring the New Hampshire Public Defender on its 40th anniversary.

In the afternoon CLE panel discussion, Judge Cooke will be joined by Michael Gunnison and Charles Swift. Gunnison is an assistant US attorney here in New Hampshire. He has also worked with the military in Iraq and will be sharing with us his perspective on anti-terrorism efforts. Swift, a former JAG officer now in private practice in Seattle, has handled some of the most noteworthy cases before military tribunals, including representing clients at Guantanamo. He argued the Hamdan case before the US Supreme Court. This panel discussion about the rule of law promises to be extraordinary.

Read more about the Midyear Meeting. Please note that once again, the NHMCLE Board has provided funding for a tuition subsidy for our Professionalism Day programming at the Midyear Meeting. If you register before Feb. 1, you can take advantage of unbeatable pricing for this canít-miss programming. I hope you all can join us there.

Larry Vogelman, of Nixon, Vogelman, Barry, Slawsky and Simoneau in Manchester, is the 2012-13 NHBA President.

Supreme Court Rule 42(9) requires all NH admitted attorneys to notify the Bar Association of any address change, home or office.

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