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Bar News - June 21, 2013

Outgoing President Grateful for Support and Progress in Trying Year


Well, here it is... my final Bar News column as president of the NH Bar. It is with mixed emotions that I will be passing the gavel to Jaye Rancourt. It has been a pleasure and an honor to represent all of your interests as the Bar president. On the other hand, it will be nice to get back to the full-time practice of law.

As many of you know, it has been a very rough year for me. Shortly after I became president, at a meeting of bar presidents in Chicago, I underwent cardiac bypass surgery. A few months later, my eldest son, Jake, was killed by a falling tree during Hurricane Sandy. I now have a better idea of why the Chinese believe that the phrase, "May you live in interesting times," is considered a curse.

The one positive aspect of tragedy and adversity, however, is the amazing support they engender.

The legal community in New Hampshire is very special. I cannot imagine getting more support and words of encouragement than what I received from all of you. It may be a cliché to say that I could not have gone through what I did without all of your support, but in this case at least, the cliché rings true. Thanks to everyone for your telephone calls, emails, notes and hugs. I will cherish them.

I owe special thanks to a few. First, my partners and the staff at Nixon, Vogelman, Barry, Slawsky & Simoneau were amazing. Without missing a beat, they jumped in to assure that none of my clients were adversely affected. I owe all of them a debt of gratitude.

Although I was not "walking the Adirondack Trail," I was absent as president for a significant period of time. The Bar Association staff, officers, and Board of Governors were amazing. They all jumped in to ensure the Bar was not leaderless. I owe a special thanks to Executive Director Jeannine McCoy and our new president, Jaye Rancourt. Having their support made such a difference.

Finally, a special thanks to my family. My significant other, Dottie, was there with me every step of the way, giving me the strength to hang in there. My other two sons, Jeremiah and Noah, my brother and sister, and the rest of my family were also invaluable in supporting me.

Every bar president starts the year with a list of goals. Invariably, life gets in the way. I am proud, however, that I at least sowed the seeds of much of what I wanted to accomplish.

The SOLACE Program is up and running. Fortunately, there have been few requests. The mechanism for dealing with them, however, is all set.

We are actively working on various projects assisting our veterans. As our program evolves, I urge all of you to try to get involved.

A bylaws change adding an out-of-state Governor to the Board of Governors is in the works. Also, our annual meeting in Portsmouth is addressing issues related to our graying bar.

Again, it has been a pleasure and an honor to serve as president of the New Hampshire Bar Association. Thank you for giving me this opportunity.

Lawrence A. Vogelman

Larry Vogelman is the 2012-13 president of the New Hampshire Bar Association and practices with the law firm of Nixon, Vogelman, Barry, Slawsky & Simoneau in Manchester.

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