From the Chair

It is that time again. Time for the old leadership to fade into the sunset or, more aptly phrased, step aside for the new leadership to take the reins. It has been a wonderful experience serving as the chair of the Standing Committee on Government Lawyers. The group of individuals who make up the committee is dedicated to both becoming better attorneys and to the collegiality of the ISBA and the Committee. Speaking of, did you read the President’s Page in the May Illinois Bar Journal? John O’Brien focused on government lawyers and why they are ISBA members. Prominently featured in the article is a very thoughtful explanation by our own committee member Mary Milano. Mary, well said. I hope that if you have not already seen the article that you take a couple of minutes to locate it and read it.

As I am sure you are all aware, we had a busy year. Thank you to everyone on the Committee who put in the effort to make this year a successful one.

At time of printing, we are in the midst of presenting a CLE program with the ISBA's Local Government Law Section Council. The first session was held in Springfield. It is my understanding that the program went well with 57 attendees. The second session, set for Chicago, is to be presented at the end of April. In addition the Committee is cosponsoring an ethics program with ISBA's State and Local Tax Section Council. This program is set for June 2nd and is to run in conjunction with ISBA’s CLE Fest.

Speaking of CLEs, the new ethics scenarios are well on the way to being ready to present during the next committee year. (This statement does not present a binding commitment, just an excited utterance.) I think that for all involved the process of writing new scenarios has been an eye opening one. And, at least for me, it has been somewhat enjoyable. If you have not been able to attend one of our ethics programs, I strongly recommend making an effort to attend the next one. These CLEs really do make earning professionalism credit fun, interesting and informative. If you have attended one in the past, you know how valuable they are. So, keep your eyes open for details on the New Ethics Extravaganza!

Admittedly, we did not get as far as I had hoped with the membership identification campaign. This issue does not have to end with my term. I still believe it is a worthwhile effort to identify all ISBA members who are government attorneys and hope that the Committee will continue in this effort. Along this line, I am hoping to find an easy and visible way for government attorneys to self-identify. Having this information can only benefit the Committee as it will make it more effective in meeting the needs of ISBA member government attorneys.

In closing, as you know, we lost a very dear and invaluable friend and member of our Committee, Rosalyn Kaplan. Kate and Lynn do a great job of recognizing her in the newsletter, but I just wanted to take one last opportunity to remember Roz, as she was an active participant in the Committee work and believed in the Committee’s goals and purposes. ■

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June 2010Volume 11Number 4PDF icon PDF version (for best printing)