Once again, this publication comes to you through the volunteers of the Standing Committee on Law Related Education for the Public of the Illinois State Bar Association.
First, let me thank Ed Schoenbaum, who as a retired administrative law judge, has stepped up to help get our newsletters to you in a timely fashion (starting with the last edition). For those who know Ed, he is a tireless volunteer who wears pink on Fridays in Springfield, and gets involved in the legal community at the local, state, and national levels. We are blessed to have him helping us!
Second, as we approach the 33rd Annual High School Mock Trial Invitational of the ISBA, let me extend thanks to Sarah Taylor who practices law in Carbondale, and Aleksandra Ostojic who is finishing her studies at the University of Illinois College of Law, for coordinating this year’s Invitational. Sarah chairs our Mock Trial Subcommittee, which also includes Rocky Martinez (our Vice Chair), Stan Wasser, Stephen Iden, Kateah McMasters, and Desiree Martin. Each of these individuals has spent many volunteer hours to write and orchestrate the Invitational, as a service to the State-wide community. We are expecting at least 42 teams to compete at the University of Illinois College of Law on March 14 and 15, for a chance to represent Illinois at the National Mock Trials in Raleigh, North Carolina, in May. We are also expecting more than 55 judges and lawyers to participate as judges and evaluators.
Third, thanks go to the leadership of the ISBA in supporting civics education through the State. As we approach Law Day 2015, we implore teachers at all levels to tap the resources offered at the Public tab of isba.org, where lesson plans can be found. Even better, access to more than 150 lawyers is provided; these volunteer lawyers stand ready, willing, and able to visit classrooms and talk on a dozen different subjects through the ISBA’s Lawyers in Classrooms program. As well, other volunteer lawyers and judges throughout the State are similarly situated with the Bringing the Courtroom to the Classroom program of the ISBA and Illinois Judges Association; BCC brings a judge and lawyer team with a PowerPoint presentation to classrooms to interact with students about our court system.
Lastly, of course, thanks go to teachers throughout the State. At the ISBA, we value your role, and look to support you in every way we can. We believe civics education is vital to a well-informed public, who elect leaders and otherwise participate in our legal system. To such end, if we can ever be of assistance, or if you have ideas on how we can collaborate, please let us know. ■