News

Mentor Needed for Law Student Program

The YLD Diversity Committee is seeking one additional mentor for a Nashville-based law student participating in the Diversity Leadership Institute (DLI). Mentors are asked to interact in person with students at least twice before the six-month program ends in June. If you are willing to serve as a mentor please contact Diversity Committee Chair Ahsaki Baptist, (901) 537-1123.

read more »

Mock Trial Teams Advance, Volunteers Needed

Two district competitions have wrapped up with several more to occur this weekend. District 1, which encompasses Shelby County, will send three teams to the state competition: St. Mary’s Episcopal School, White Station High School and Memphis University School. District 6, which covers Cheatham, Dickson, Houston, Humphreys, Montgomery, Robertson, Stewart and Sumner counties, qualified one team for state. Defending state champion Springfield High School will again represent the district.

The 2015 State High School Mock Trial Competition will take place March 27-28 at the Metro Courthouse in Nashville. The competition requires a lot of volunteers to run smoothly! Sitting judges in Tennessee may volunteer to serve as presiding judges of trial rounds, lawyers may serve as scorers, and law students and legal staff may serve as bailiffs. Those who want to volunteer should fill out the online response form. For more information about the competition contact Mock Trial Chair Josh Dougan, (731) 437-0469. Follow news @tnmocktrial.

read more »

Young Lawyers Elected to TBA Posts, Vacancies to be Filled

Several young lawyers were elected to posts within the Tennessee Bar Association earlier this month. Knoxville lawyer Troy Weston with Eldridge & Blakney will represent Tennessee young lawyers in the American Bar Association House of Delegates during the 2015-2016 bar year. He was elected without opposition and succeeds Marshall County General Sessions Judge Lee Bussart, whose term had expired.

read more »

YLD 2015 Election Petitions Due April 1

Young lawyers interested in running for leadership positions within the Young Lawyers Division (YLD) for the 2015-2016 bar year have until April 1 to file a nominating petition. Elected positions include Vice President (must be from the Western Grand Division), East Tennessee Governor, Middle Tennessee Governor, West Tennessee Governor, Secretary, Treasurer and district representatives from odd-numbered districts:

  • District 1: Carter, Greene, Hamblen, Hancock, Hawkins, Johnson, Sullivan, Unicoi, Washington counties
  • District 3: Knox County
  • District 5: Hamilton County
  • District 7: Cannon, Coffee, Franklin, Grundy, Marion, Rutherford, Sequatchie counties
  • District 9: Davidson County
  • District 11: Bedford, Giles, Hickman, Lawrence, Lewis, Lincoln, Marshall, Maury, Moore, Perry, Wayne, Williamson counties
  • District 13: Chester, Decatur, Fayette, Hardeman, Hardin, Haywood, Henderson, Lauderdale, McNairy, Madison, Tipton counties
read more »

ABA to Fund Programs that Employ New, Underutilized Lawyers

Organizations with initiatives to employ new and underutilized lawyers in innovative ways while meeting the legal needs of poor and moderate-income individuals can apply for start-up funding from the American Bar Association. Now in the second year, the Catalyst Grants are designed for programs proposed by bar associations, courts, law schools and other groups. View the press release

read more »

Pera to Lead TBA in 2017-2018

Memphis attorney Lucian Pera of Adams and Reese will be president of the Tennessee Bar Association in 2017-2018, according to election-qualifying results released today. No other candidate filed for the vice president position by the Feb. 15 deadline. After taking office as vice president this summer, Pera will become president-elect in 2016-2017 and take over the organization’s leadership in June 2017.

There will be one contested election this spring. John Holt with the Law Offices of Holt & Kroeger and Roger Nell, the public defender in Clarksville, are both vying for the District 19 seat in the House of Delegates. Several vacancies in the House will be filled through appointment, as will the West Grand Division Governor, Position 1, post that Pera now holds on the Board of Governors.

Candidates who filed for the following positions will take office at the June annual meeting as they did not draw opponents: David McDowell, 3rd District Governor; Mary Dohner Smith, 5th District Governor; Kim Helper, 6th District Governor; Brian Faughnan, 8th District Governor; Sarah Sheppeard, East Grand Division Governor, Position 1; Andy Roskind, East Grand Division Governor, Position 2; Gary Shockley, Middle Grand Division Governor, Position 1; David Veile, Middle Grand Division Governor, Position 2; and Carl Carter, West Grand Division Governor, Position 2. Also winning without opposition are two TBA delegates to the ABA House of Delegates: Jonathan Cole, Position 1, and young lawyer delegate Troy Weston, Position 3.

read more »

DLI Class Holds 1st Session, Mentors Still Needed

The law student members of the 2015 Diversity Leadership Institute met for their first session this month as part of the TBA’s Leadership Conference. The group joined legal leaders from across the state to learn about TBA President Jonathan Steen’s key initiatives for the year as well as legislation of interest to lawyers. Class members also held separate sessions that featured a keynote address by Judge Pamela Reeves with the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee and an interactive activity about learning styles. Special thanks to YLD Diversity Committee Chair Ahsaki Baptist and committee member Amber Floyd, who planned the weekend’s activities, and to former TBA President Gail Vaughn Ashworth, who moderated the class caucus.

The Diversity Committee reports that additional mentors are needed for law students participating in the DLI. Mentors are assigned to one member of the class and are required to interact with the student at least twice during the six-month program. If you are willing to serve as a mentor please contact Baptist, (901) 537-1123.

read more »

YLD Recognizes CASA, Other Volunteers

YLD President Rachel Moses presented the 2015 CASA Volunteer of the Year Award to Jane Hickman of Greenbrier during the TBA’s 2015 Leadership Conference this month. Hickman volunteers with CASA of Robertson County. Moses also recognized three attorney volunteers with Star of the Quarter awards. Honored were Chris McCarty, chair of the YLD Membership Committee, for undertaking a major membership campaign; Cherrelle Hooper, District 8 Representative; for producing the first Wills for Heroes clinic in Gallatin in more than five years and serving the most first responders of any clinic this year; and Adam Moore, editor of E-DICT, for dedication to the division and outreach to members through the division’s monthly newsletter.

See photos from the group’s Winter Meeting

Hickman (left) receives her award from YLD President Rachel Moses

read more »

Don’t Miss the 2015 Corporate Counsel Pro Bono Initiative Gala

Young lawyers are invited to attend the 2015 Corporate Counsel Pro Bono Initiative Gala, set for March 7 at the Hermitage Hotel in Nashville. Individual tickets are priced at $200 and will provide access to a great meal, good fellowship and an opportunity to support pro bono projects across the state. To learn more about the event or purchase tickets, contact TBA Access to Justice Coordinator Liz Todaro, (615) 383-7421.

read more »

YLD Invited Guest News for January 2015

The TBA YLD Board invites specialty and minority bars in the state to name a representative to serve as an unfunded and non-voting member of the board. The goal of the invited guest program is to increase diversity among the board and provide an opportunity for young lawyers involved in other legal organizations to have a voice in the state bar association. See a list of all organizations invited to send representatives.

East Tennessee Lawyers’ Association for Women – The East Tennessee Lawyers’ Association for Women, represented on the TBA YLD Board by Knoxville lawyer Alyssa Minge, has unveiled a new website featuring event information and a member directory. The group also reports that it created nearly 400 toiletry bags for YWCA residents last month. It asks area lawyers to save the date for two upcoming events: a fundraiser for CASA of the Heartland on Feb. 21 in Clinton, and its own Supreme Court luncheon in May. For more information about ETLAW contact Minge by email, (865) 342-4916, or connect with the group on Twitter @TNLawWomen, on Facebook or on LinkedIn.

read more »

YLD Affiliate News for January 2015

American Bar Association YLD – The ABA Law Student Division is seeking attorneys to serve as volunteer judges at several upcoming competitions, including the Arbitration Competition National Finals in Chicago, Negotiation Competition National Finals in Houston and National Appellate Advocacy Competition in Boston, New York City, San Francisco, Seattle, St. Louis and Washington, DC. Questions about volunteering for any of these events should be directed to Alia S. Graham, (312) 988-5671. For more information about getting involved with the ABA visit the group online or contact Nashville lawyer Matt Potempa, (615) 810-8438.

Blount County Bar Association YLD – For more information about the group contact President Nick Black, (865) 238-0665.

read more »

Solo in a Box Spotlight: Marketing

With more Tennessee attorneys – especially new lawyers – deciding to “hang out” their own shingle and begin a solo or small firm practice, the TBA has developed the Solo in a Box Toolkit. Each issue of E-DICT this year will spotlight one of the toolkit’s 12 sections. This month we look at marketing efforts.

In the Marketing section, the Solo in a Box Toolkit addresses the most fundamental challenge of running one’s own firm: getting paying clients in the door. There is no magic bullet or “one-size-fits-all” approach for small firm marketing. Lawyers will need to market in a way that makes sense for them, their practice areas, the community and prospective clients. The toolkit looks at four major components of any successful marketing strategy:

read more »

YLD Litigation 2015: Making the Most of Discovery

“How much is too much” is one of the many questions in the maze of discovery. This six-hour program covers many levels of written discovery and e-discovery. Presenters will cover best practices, using investigators to verify information, effective use of subpoenas, enforcement and dealing with difficult counsel. A session on social medial discovery will help you with Internet searches. Discussion on alternatives to written discovery will include site inspection, deposition by interrogatories, and physical exam versus independent medical exams.

Registration: 8 – 8:30 a.m.
Program: 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Nashville: April 2
Tennessee Bar Center

Memphis: April 9
University of Memphis Fed Ex Institute of Technology
Fishbowl Room
read more »

YLD Ethics 2015: The Business of Lawyering

You know the law but don’t let the business of law slow you down as you build your reputation and client base. The Business of Lawyering: Professional Development for Today’s Attorney is a three-hour ethics seminar that focuses on the practical aspects of lawyering. Topics include managing yourself and support staff, using case managements systems, engaging clients, ending the client relationship ethically and using social media to advertise.

read more »

Upcoming Wills for Heroes Clinics (as of 1/30/15)

The YLD again this year is providing free wills and other end of life documents for first responders in Tennessee. Clinics have been scheduled across the state through this coming May. Please contact the event organizer for more details or to volunteer. The following clinics are scheduled in the next few months. See the list of all scheduled clinics.

read more »

TBA Board OKs 5 New Sections

TBA members will soon have five new sections to serve them and their practices. Responding to member interest, the TBA Board of Governors this month approved new sections for Communication Law, International Law & Practice, Animal Law, LGBT and Local Government Practice. All TBA sections are self supporting and led by volunteers. If you are interested in becoming a founding member of any of these sections or have an interest in helping lead the development of any of the new sections, you can learn more on TBA.org.

read more »

Volunteers Needed for Mock Trial Competition

The 2015 State High School Mock Trial Competition will take place March 27-28 at the Metro Courthouse in Nashville. The annual competition brings students together from across the state to test their advocacy skills. The competition requires a lot of volunteers to run smoothly! Sitting judges in Tennessee may volunteer to serve as presiding judges of trial rounds, lawyers may serve as scorers, and law students and legal staff may serve as bailiffs. Those who want to volunteer should fill out the online response form.

read more »

TBA Launches Survey of Tennessee Lawyers

The Tennessee Bar Association today launched its bi-annual survey of all Tennessee-licensed attorneys. TBA members and non-members are encouraged to take a few minutes to respond to this important survey, which will help guide the TBA as it works to achieve its objectives of informing, educating, promoting and supporting the legal community in Tennessee. The results of the survey will be presented in aggregate form, so individual responses will remain anonymous and confidential. The results will be tabulated and analyzed by Yacoubian Research of Memphis and Nashville. For more information or assistance with the survey, contact TBA Membership Director Kelly Stosik at (615) 383-7421 or Will Hampton at Yacoubian Research at (877) 250-7890. Thank you in advance for expressing your honest views of the Tennessee Bar Association.

read more »

YLD Presents Awards, Hosts Student Leadership Group

The Young Lawyers Division Board met in conjunction with the TBA Leadership Conference this past weekend. In addition to conducting its winter board meeting, the group presented the 2015 CASA Volunteer of the Year Award to Jane Hickman with CASA of Robertson County and recognized several volunteer lawyers for their work. The YLD Diversity Committee also held the opening session for this year’s Diversity Leadership Institute. The class of 18 law students participated in the weekend’s leadership programming and heard from U.S. District Court Judge Pam Reeves on the “10 Commandments of Leadership.” The group will meet again in March and June. See photos from the YLD’s meetings.

read more »

YLD Presents Awards, Hosts Law Student Leadership Group

The Young Lawyers Division Board met in conjunction with the TBA Leadership Conference this past weekend. In addition to conducting its winter board meeting, the group presented the 2015 CASA Volunteer of the Year Award to Jane Hickman with CASA of Robertson County and recognized several volunteer lawyers for their work.

The YLD Diversity Committee also held the opening session for this year’s Diversity Leadership Institute. The class of 18 law students participated in the weekend’s leadership programming and heard from U.S. District Court Judge Pam Reeves on the “10 Commandments of Leadership.” The group will meet again in March and June.

read more »

YLD Affiliate News for December 2014

American Bar Association YLD – A report from the group’s Fall Meeting in Portland is now available.The group’s next meeting is the 2015 Midyear Meeting Feb. 5-8 in Houston. Those interested in running for an elected position have until Feb. 7 to provide written notice to the current secretary, assembly speaker and staff director. There is no special form. The candidate’s statement should identify name, address and telephone number and state, “Please accept this letter as my written notice of candidacy for [position sought].” Visit the group online or contact Nashville lawyer Matt Potempa, (615) 810-8438 for more information.

read more »

Solo in a Box Spotlight: Human Resources Advice

With more Tennessee attorneys – especially new lawyers – deciding to “hang out” their own shingle and begin a solo or small firm practice, the TBA has developed the Solo in a Box Toolkit. Each issue of E-DICT this year will spotlight one of the toolkit’s 12 sections. This month we look at human resources issues.

At some point, every solo practioner must weigh the cost of handling his or her administrative tasks versus the cost of hiring a receptionist or paralegal. If you are spending as much time handling administrative work as you are handling legal work, you are probably leaving money on the table!

read more »

Upcoming Wills for Heroes Clinics (as of 12/30/14)

The YLD will again this year provide free wills and other end of life documents for first responders in Tennessee. The following clinics have been scheduled for the winter. Please contact the event organizer for more details or to volunteer. To get involved in the Wills for Heroes Committee or to request a clinic in your area, contact committee chair Joann Coston-Holloway. Learn more about the Wills for Heroes program.

read more »

Reminder: File by Feb. 15 for Elected TBA Offices

During 2015, a number of officers, governors and delegates of the Tennessee Bar Association (TBA) will be elected as set forth in the association’s bylaws. Among the positions open for consideration are vice president (must be from the West Tennessee Grand Division), Grand Division Governors, District Governors and members of the House of Delegates, including three seats reserved for young lawyers.

Two members to represent the TBA in the American Bar Association (ABA) House of Delegates also will be elected for two-year terms. The positions are designated positions 1 and 3. Position 3 is reserved for a young lawyer. The delegate must be 35 years of age or younger when the term begins at the close of the 2015 ABA Annual Meeting. Judge Lee Bussart currently holds the position but is not eligible for re-election.

To qualify for any of these offices, a candidate must file a nominating petition with the executive director of the TBA. The petition must contain the names of 25 members of the association in good standing. The petition must be received at the TBA office on or before Feb. 15. For more information on running for any of these offices, download the full election notice or visit the TBA’s online election resources website.

read more »

Mentors Needed for Law Student Diversity Program

The YLD’s Diversity Leadership Institute (DLI) kicked off earlier this month but a few additional mentors are needed for law student participants. Mentors are assigned to one member of the DLI class and are required to interact with the student at least twice during the six-month program. If you are willing to serve as a mentor please contact Diversity Committee Chair Ahsaki Baptist, (901) 537-1123.

read more »