2012 Law Day Events in Tennessee

Legal organizations across the state are planning events to mark Law Day 2012, and TBA President Danny Van Horn is encouraging lawyers to get involved: "Law Day provides an important opportunity for all Americans to reflect on the unique elements of our legal and judicial systems," he said. "Legal organizations across the state are holding events and activities to celebrate the rule of law and foster greater understanding of the American judicial system. All Tennesseans are encouraged to get involved." The following events are planned for this year's celebration:

April 26     Columbia
The Maury County Bar Association will hold its annual Law Day event April 26 in Columbia. The celebration will feature a keynote address by Tennessee Supreme Court Justice Gary R. Wade, special music by first graders at McDowell Elementary School, and presentation of the Liberty Bell Award to Virgil Moore, a retired banker and long time community leader, activist, and philanthropist. The 2012 Law Day chairs are Claudia Jack and Chaz Molder. For more information contact Molder at cmolder@hardinandparkes.com or (931) 388-4022. Read a report from the event in the Columbia Daily Herald

April 27     Memphis
The Memphis Bar Association is hosting a week of activities to commemorate Law Day. The celebration kicks off with the annual Law Week Launch Party set for Friday, April 27 on the Court Square. Other events include a naturalization ceremony at 10 a.m. Monday, April 30, at The Cannon Center, and the association's annual memorial service at noon on May 2 at Calvary Episcopal Church. The service honors members of the bar who passed away during the last year. Learn more about these events online or read an article in the Memphis Daily News
 
April 27     Jackson
The Jackson & Madison County Bar Association will hold its annual Law Day Luncheon on Friday, April 27, at First United Methodist Church in downtown Jackson. The event will begin at 11:30 a.m. The keynote address will be given by Edward L. Stanton III, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Tennessee. Learn more on the bar's website
 
April 30     Nashville 
The Nashville Bar Association will hold its annual Law Day Luncheon on Monday, April 30, at the Downtown Renaissance Hotel from 11:15 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. The event will feature a keynote speech by U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander, who will recount the events that led to the early removal of former Tennessee governor Ray Blanton, who by all appearances, was using his last days in office to pardons that appeared to be purely political or the result of bribery. Leaders in the legislature moved against Blanton by swearing in Governor-elect Alexander three days early. Alexander will reflect on the legal and constitutional issues that were at play during that time. The luncheon also will feature various awards and an announcement of the winners of the local art and essay contest.  Learn more on the NBA's website
 
May 1        Statewide
The Tennessee Bar Association will announce the winners of its 2012 YouTube Video Contest and 2012 Law Day Art & Essay Contest on May 1. This year's YouTube contest, sponsored by the TBA's Public Education Committee, asked students to produce a three-minute video exploring the constitutional right to freedom of communication. First-prize winners from each age category will receive a cash award and have their winning videos shown to leaders of the state's legal community at the Tennessee Bar Association's Annual Convention in June. View the entries here. The art and essay contests, sponsored by the TBA Young Lawyers Division, give students the opportunity to express their ideas about living in a society that is governed by the rule of law, and achieve statewide recognition for their work. The 2012 competition theme, "No Courts, No Justice, No Freedom" asked students to consider the importance of the courts and their role in ensuring access to justice for all Americans. Learn more about the competition or see winners here
 
May 4        Knoxville
The Knoxville Bar Association is hosting its annual Law Day Lunch on Friday, May 4, from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the Knoxville Hilton. Following this year's Law Day theme of "No Courts, No Justice, No Freedom," the luncheon will feature a panel discussion -- led by University of Tennessee College of Law School Dean Douglas A. Blaze -- that will explore issues that impact the legal profession, the courts and the American system of justice. The luncheon also will feature an announcement of the winners of the local art and essay contest. Learn more on the bar's website
 
May 9        Knoxville
The East Tennessee Lawyers Association for Women (ETLAW) will celebrate Law Day with a luncheon on May 9 at noon with the justices of the Tennessee Supreme Court. The event will take place at the Foundry, 747 Worlds Fair Park Drive. The guest speaker is Judge Jane Branstetter Stranch of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. Contact Terry Woods at twoods@laet.org or (865) 384-2175 for more information. Download a copy of the invitation
 
May 10      Chattanooga
The Chattanooga Bar Association will host its annual Law Day celebration on Thursday, May 10 at the Sheraton Read House. The event will feature remarks from William T. "Bill" Robinson III, president of the American Bar Association; presentation of the 2012 Liberty Bell Award; announcement of the Law Day High School Essay Scholarship recipient; announcement of the 2012 class of Chattanooga Bar Foundation Fellows; and presentation of the Judge W. Neil Thomas III Paralegal Utilization Award. For more information contact the CBA at (423) 756-3222 or visit the association online.
 
May 11      Clarksville
The Montgomery County Bar Association will host the 2012 Annual Pat McCutchen Big Spittoon Golf Scramble on May 11. The event will be held at the Swan Lake Golf Course in Clarksville. Start time will be at 1:30 p.m. For more information visit the association's website or contact association president Erin S. Poland at espoland@clarksvillelawyers.com or (931) 552-3475.
 
May 15      Cookeville
The Upper Cumberland Young Lawyers Association will celebrate Law Day with a dinner in Cookeville on May 15 at 6 p.m. The event will take place at John's Place at 11 Gibson Ave. The featured speaker will be Dr. Michael Birdwell, a history professor at Tennessee Tech University. He will discuss how John's Place became instrumental in building race relations in Cookeville.  John McClellan, the late owner of John's Place, was the first African American elected to a public office in Putnam County. To RSVP to the dinner, contact Rachel Moses at rmoses@las.org or (931) 528-7436.
 
Monthlong  Sumner County
The Sumner County Bar Association is sending members to area high schools throughout the month of May to educate students about the law and about opportunities for a career in the legal profession. For more information contact association president Jay Ingrum at jayingrum@phillipsandingrum.com or (615) 452-8030.
 
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For More Information

Envisioned in 1957 by then American Bar Association President Charles Rhynes as a special national day to mark the nation's commitment to the rule of law, the first Law Day was established by President Dwight D. Eisenhower  and celebrated in 1958.

Law Day was made official in 1961 when the U.S. Congress issued a joint resolution designating May 1 as the official Law Day.

Today, state and local bar associations across the country sponsor Law Day programs designed to enhance the public's appreciation for the law, foster a greater understanding of the American judicial system, and provide an opportunity for attorneys to serve their local communities.

Learn more about Law Day

Download a planning guide from the American Bar Association