September 2019
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Register for September's Small Bar Town Hall on Bar Association Policies

As the old saying goes, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” Even in a smaller organization, it is important to have governance and human resources policies in place before we need them. We don’t want to hastily scramble for a conflict of interest policy as a board member seeks to award the newsletter printing contract to his brother-in-law. During this session, we’ll run through the elements of a good policy and review a checklist of those you should have in place. We’ll also look at ways to ensure that they are up to date. This session will be interactive and there will be plenty of time for questions, so bring ‘em on. Join us on Monday, September 23, at 2PM Eastern/1PM Central, where Elizabeth Derrico will lead the discussion. Register now!

What’s New with You and Your Association?

Send news of promotions, retirements, awards, etc., to NABE News Editor Pamela Robinson at or fill out this questionnaire.

NABE Professional Development Committee Requests Your Program Ideas!

The NABE Professional Development Committee will gather October 21-22, in Chicago, IL, to begin the planning process for the 2020 NABE Midyear Meeting which will be held February 11-13, in Austin, TX. The PDC wants to hear the ideas and areas of interest of as many bar professionals as possible and is requesting program proposals. Don't worry if your idea is still abstract, and no need to fret if it's not something you would personally present. Please take a moment to share your thoughts by following this link. This form will be available to submit ideas throughout the year, but for your idea to be considered for the 2020 Midyear, please provide a response no later than October 9, 2019, so that the PDC may view at their fall committee meeting.

September 2019

President’s Message

By Julie M. Armstrong

Julie M. Armstrong

Do you remember the last time you had fun at work? I hope your first thought was, “Yes, and it was today or at least this week.”  Instead, too often these days I’m hearing from NABE colleagues answers like, “Oh, this was supposed to be fun?”  Friends, life’s too short to not have fun doing something that occupies as much of our lives as our careers do.

Realistically, I get that no professional life is going to be fun every minute of every day.  Life gets busy, work piles up, and stress levels increase.  In my career I have worked for 52 different association and foundation presidents.  Honestly, more than a couple has resulted in an internal countdown clock to the year’s end.  In those instances I’ve been known to say, “With the right team around me, I can do anything for a year.”  However, I have to admit I’ve often failed to remember that the team around me needs and deserves an engaged and positive leader.  I’ve put my head down and not so silently suffered through the year.  I suspect I’m not alone.  In the churn to just get the work done we may forget that what we say and what we do affects those around us.  What if we choose to focus on being the leader for others that we wish we had?  How might that improve our own happiness?


D.C. Bar Celebrates 19th Amendment Centennial with Writing Competition

The D.C. Bar Communities Office recently announced its sponsorship of a writing competition that will focus upon the impact of the 19th Amendment since its ratification.  A project of the bar’s Law Student Community, the competition is open to full- and part-time law students who are members of the community.  The winning essay will be published in Washington Lawyer. Whether your bar is already working on its 19th Amendment celebration or just getting started, visit the ABA’s 19th Amendment resource page for inspiration and materials.

Tick Tock: NABE Membership Renewal Period Winding Down
Time is running out for you to renew your NABE membership. Beginning in October, members that haven’t renewed their dues will be dropped from the membership list. That means no access to your favorite NABE electronic topical or section communities. No weekly NABE Bulletin featuring news of the organization and tips and news items curated especially for our unique community of bar professionals. No sounding boards made up of professionals who are facing challenges similar to your own. It’s not too late to maintain all the advantages of NABE membership, but renew now to avoid a lapse in benefits. 

New Schedule for NABE Bulletin

Starting this week, NABE Bulletin will take a break during the weeks that NABE News is scheduled for publication. But, the professional tips and tidbits you’ve come to expect from NABE Bulletin each week will be published right here in NABE News during the off weeks. See column at right. And, if you missed any past issues of NABE Bulletin, check out the archive of past editions for ideas and news selected with bar professionals in mind.

Join the GR Section in Denver, CO, for the State Legislative Workshop

Registration now for the NABE 2019 Governmental Relations Section State Legislative Workshop, Wednesday, November 13 - Friday, November 15, in Denver. The registration fee is just $100 for section members through October 4 and includes both substantive programming and meals. This annual gathering organized by and for individuals who perform legislative advocacy on behalf of the legal profession will inform, energize, and inspire!  And, with the exciting Denver locale and awesome Rocky Mountain backdrop, registrants are certain to be wowed by their surroundings.  Substantive meetings will take place at both the Colorado Bar Association and the Magnolia Hotel, where accommodations are only $189 per night. For more about pricing, hotel reservations, schedule of events, and scholarships, visit here.


Maryland State Bar Association Welcomes Doris Barnes

Doris Barnes

Doris Barnes has accepted the position of Section & Committee Advisor at the Maryland State Bar Association.  Doris previously served as the executive director of the Baltimore County Bar Association for 13 years and was active in the NABE Small Bar community before leaving the BCBA to serve as full-time caregiver for her elderly father in 2017.  Of returning to bar work, but at the state level, Doris notes that "working with the MSBA vs. the local bar association means having a full team, and no longer needing to be chief cook and bottle washer.”  She says her new role allows her to “fully concentrate on providing assistance to the volunteer members serving in leadership roles.” Doris says she is “thrilled” to be part of the MSBA team…and NABE is thrilled to have Doris back in the bar business and within our community of professionals. 

Staff Update at National Conference of Women's Bar Associations

Diane Rynerson, executive director of the National Conference of Women’s Bar Associations, retired from her position at the end of August. Prior to her role with the bar, Diane was the first executive director of the Oregon Women Lawyers Foundation and served as an ex officio member of the Foundation board.  Kelly Karstaedt is the new executive director of the NCWBA.  Kelly is an attorney in Jacksonville, Florida, and a graduate of the Florida Coastal School of Law. Her experience includes executive director of the American Board of Trial Advocates, Jacksonville Chapter, and the Jacksonville Justice Association. Congratulations, Diane, on your retirement, and welcome to NABE, Kelly.

Steal This Idea: A Law Day 5K

The Orange County Bar Association (Florida) hosts an annual 5k walk/run to support free civil legal aid programs and benefit the Legal Aid Society of the Orange County Bar Association, Inc. and the Orange County Bar Association Foundation. Learn more here.

Leading from Behind in CLE

Embracing interactive learning and restructuring programs to solve problems may be keys to more successful CLEs. explains here.

Email Impact: Less is More

How much email is too much? According to this Associations Now article, if you want your members to pay attention, less is more. 

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