January 15, 2010
Message from the President
Elizabeth J. Watters
A new year brings great opportunities and benefits for members of the Columbus Bar. We will be profiling these opportunities and benefits over the next several weeks, but I wanted to give you a quick overview of how we are actively working to serve your needs through new committees, initiatives and benefits as we strive to make sure we are the bar association that has what you need most.
The Board of Governors is pleased to announce the formation of the Tax Exempt/Not For Profit Corporations Committee. This committee, which will be co-chaired by James King of Jones Day and Jerry Allen of Bricker & Eckler, will focus on the representation of nonprofit organizations of all sizes and missions as well as the representation of individuals and private foundations with regard to estate planning and charitable giving endeavors. The committee is open to all members, including members who work in the not for profit area. Please contact the Columbus Bar if you are interested in becoming a member of this committee.
Discussions are also ongoing regarding a potential Commercial Litigation Committee. Would you be interested in such a committee or does the Common Pleas Court Committee meet all of your commercial litigation needs? Let us know what you think.
The Board of Governors is similarly pleased to announce the formation of the Residency Program for New Lawyers. This program, designed with the input and support of the OSU Moritz College of Law and Capital Law School and the financial support of the Columbus Bar Foundation, will assist newly admitted lawyers in obtaining hands-on, practical skills and client representation, while at the same time helping to serve the unmet legal needs in central Ohio. The Residency Program will also result in an expansion of the Columbus Bar Military Assistance Task Force, providing free/reduced fee legal services to active military personnel, not veterans, experiencing legal complications as a result of their military service. Members interested in serving on the Steering Committee for the Residency Program or volunteering to serve on the Military Assistance Task Force should contact Jill Snitcher McQuain.
The Columbus Bar Local Practice Handbook, containing the rules of selected federal courts, State of Ohio Courts and the Courts of Franklin County and Contiguous Counties, with the practices and informal rules of the judges of all these courts, is going online via Wiki and will be available free to all members in the near future. We expect this to be a robust and much used member benefit.
Taking on leadership roles can be one of the most rewarding parts of your legal career. The Columbus Bar offers several unique opportunities for lawyers of every practice type to demonstrate leadership abilities and advance your professional career. Several of our committees by appointment are seeking new members at this time. They are the Ethics, the Judicial Campaign Advertising, and the Judiciary (aka Judicial Screening) Committees. The Ethics Committee investigates and prosecutes ethical violations on behalf of the Supreme Court of Ohio. The Judicial Campaign Advertising Committee monitors campaign advertising materials to ensure compliance with the Judicial Canons. The Judicial Screening Committee screens local judicial candidates. Membership on these committees is by appointment only, so attorneys who are interested should contact either Executive Director Alex Lagusch or President-elect the Honorable Stephen McIntosh.