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Abrams: Get Involved – Lots to Feel Good About

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abrams-jeff-indybarI walked around the office at the end of last month asking attorneys if they had any interest in getting more involved with the Indianapolis Bar Association. A few of the attorneys looked at me with a “deer in headlights” look and told me that they really did not know a lot about the opportunities for participation with the IndyBar. I then mentioned to them several committees, programs and other opportunities where the glaze in their eyes became much more focused.

The Indianapolis Bar Association provides numerous programs, benefits and services to our community and provides you with an opportunity to give time or resources to those that interest you. Please consider getting more involved with the IndyBar in any of the following, which are not entirely inclusive since we provide in excess of 75 opportunities for involvement.

Bar Leader Series, Bar Leader Projects and Bar Leader Graduate Series. Each year the Bar Leader Committee selects 25 young lawyers to serve in the Bar Leader Series. These attorneys meet monthly and learn about all aspects of the legal community, with notable public leaders educating them about all aspects of the law and Indianapolis. They also participate in smaller groups to provide some benefit to a local organization. These have ranged from helping students at an inner-city school learn about golf and the disciplines attendant to it as well as seeking donations from friends and co-workers for Dress for Success.

You can serve on the Pro Bono Committee and/or assist in any of the numerous projects they have including Ask A Lawyer, Commonly Asked Questions About Indiana Law, Homeless Project, Hospice Project, Legal Line, Marion Superior Court Pro Bono Project or Pro Bono Alliance with the Indianapolis Legal Aid Society. I could go on and on about the benefits and how rewarding it is to participate in any of these programs, but I would not have any space left on this page for any other programs. Suffice it to say that they are incredibly worthy programs that help people in dire need of our legal services and advice.

Our Public Outreach Committee provides opportunities for students at Shortridge High School to shadow you for a day if the student has any interest in the legal profession. Students spend part of a day with you, watching you, sitting with you and attending all daily activities. This can be incredibly rewarding for students interested in legal careers and personally very gratifying to know that you may have encouraged someone who otherwise would not have dreamed about becoming a lawyer to seriously consider how he or she can ultimately join our Bar following graduation.

The Paralegal Committee and Criminal Justice Section hold collection drives for the city’s “Bears on Patrol” program, where stuffed bears are donated to law enforcement, fire fighters and EMS personnel who give them to children when they are involved with traumatic experiences. This can be amazingly comforting to young people during a difficult time in their life.

The Law Student Division provides opportunities for students to have breakfast with bar leaders on a regular basis. These informal meetings are small in size where attorneys educate a law student on the workings of the practice of law and the Indianapolis Bar Association. Some of these breakfasts have led to good friendships between lawyers and law students and also job opportunities.

Our Senior Counsel Division (attorneys with 25 years of practice or over the age of 50) provides a Safe Ask Program where inexperienced attorneys can contact senior counsel and ask any questions relating to the practice. These are great mentoring programs that not everyone is aware of, and we can always use more seasoned attorneys to help a young attorney pursue a better career.

The Women and Law Division provides assistance to Coburn Place every year by bypassing the traditional division holiday party in favor of hosting a holiday celebration for women and children staying at the home, complete with food, games and activities.

The foregoing list is only a handful of programs, benefits and services that the Indianapolis Bar Association provides to its members and the community. The rest can be found at our website indybar.org. Get involved. Call the Indianapolis Bar Association at 317-269-2000 and find out how you can participate in any of those that pique your interest.


It is a New Year with new year’s resolutions.
If you get involved with the Bar, you won’t be at risk for prosecutions.
The services you provide will be appreciated by so many.
You could retire if for every soul you touch you were to receive a penny.
So call 269-2000 when you get near a phone.
And join all the happy lawyers who never feel alone.

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  1. Indianapolis employers harassment among minorities AFRICAN Americans needs to be discussed the metro Indianapolis area is horrible when it comes to harassing African American employees especially in the local healthcare facilities. Racially profiling in the workplace is an major issue. Please make it better because I'm many civil rights leaders would come here and justify that Indiana is a state the WORKS only applies to Caucasian Americans especially in Hamilton county. Indiana targets African Americans in the workplace so when governor pence is trying to convince people to vote for him this would be awesome publicity for the Presidency Elections.

  2. Wishing Mary Willis only God's best, and superhuman strength, as she attempts to right a ship that too often strays far off course. May she never suffer this personal affect, as some do who attempt to change a broken system: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QojajMsd2nE

  3. Indiana's seatbelt law is not punishable as a crime. It is an infraction. Apparently some of our Circuit judges have deemed settled law inapplicable if it fails to fit their litmus test of political correctness. Extrapolating to redefine terms of behavior in a violation of immigration law to the entire body of criminal law leaves a smorgasbord of opportunity for judicial mischief.

  4. I wonder if $10 diversions for failure to wear seat belts are considered moral turpitude in federal immigration law like they are under Indiana law? Anyone know?

  5. What a fine article, thank you! I can testify firsthand and by detailed legal reports (at end of this note) as to the dire consequences of rejecting this truth from the fine article above: "The inclusion and expansion of this right [to jury] in Indiana’s Constitution is a clear reflection of our state’s intention to emphasize the importance of every Hoosier’s right to make their case in front of a jury of their peers." Over $20? Every Hoosier? Well then how about when your very vocation is on the line? How about instead of a jury of peers, one faces a bevy of political appointees, mini-czars, who care less about due process of the law than the real czars did? Instead of trial by jury, trial by ideological ordeal run by Orwellian agents? Well that is built into more than a few administrative law committees of the Ind S.Ct., and it is now being weaponized, as is revealed in articles posted at this ezine, to root out post moderns heresies like refusal to stand and pledge allegiance to all things politically correct. My career was burned at the stake for not so saluting, but I think I was just one of the early logs. Due, at least in part, to the removal of the jury from bar admission and bar discipline cases, many more fires will soon be lit. Perhaps one awaits you, dear heretic? Oh, at that Ind. article 12 plank about a remedy at law for every damage done ... ah, well, the founders evidently meant only for those damages done not by the government itself, rabid statists that they were. (Yes, that was sarcasm.) My written reports available here: Denied petition for cert (this time around): http://tinyurl.com/zdmawmw Denied petition for cert (from the 2009 denial and five year banishment): http://tinyurl.com/zcypybh Related, not written by me: Amicus brief: http://tinyurl.com/hvh7qgp

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