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IBA: Nominations open for education, pro bono awards

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Help the Indianapolis Bar recognize the many ways lawyers and legal professionals inspire us and help our community. Nominate your peers for IndyBar awards — to be presented at the Recognition Luncheon on November 29, 2011.

Nominations are being sought for the Dr. John Morton Finney Jr. Award for Excellence in Legal Education and the Pro Bono Awards. The deadline for all nominations is 5 p.m. Tuesday, November 1, 2011. You may e-mail your nominations to iba@indybar.org, or download the form at www.indybar.org.

Additional awards are chosen by the board or designated committees.

Please join us as we present these annual awards to deserving IndyBar members at the Recognition Awards Luncheon at noon on Tuesday, November 29, 2011, at the Conrad Hotel (corner of Illinois and Washington streets). Register for the luncheon at www.indybar.org.

The 2011 Class of Indianapolis Bar Foundation Distinguished Fellows will also be featured, as well as lawyers who have practiced for 50 years and 25 years.

Award criteria

The Dr. John Morton Finney, Jr. Award for Excellence in Legal Education was established in 1998 to honor the memory of Dr. Finney who, during his lifetime, demonstrated the value of education and a love of the law. The successful candidate for this award will have made significant and unique contributions to further legal education within our community. Those active in legal education projects, public education or working within Indiana’s law schools shall be considered. The recipient will be chosen by a selection committee appointed by the IndyBar President.

The recipients of the Pro Bono Awards need to be members of the IndyBar. Under consideration are actively practicing lawyers, retired lawyers, in-house and corporate counsel, law firms, law students, and paralegals who have made outstanding contributions toward delivering volunteer legal services to the poor and disadvantaged.

Typically, the awards are presented in the following categories:

Practicing Attorney, Aiding Individuals — This attorney participates in advice as well as representation pro bono programs, not necessarily all sponsored by the IndyBar.

Practicing Attorney, Aiding Entities that Serve the Indigent — This attorney practices case representation pro bono through programs or agencies that support the poor.

Law Student — This student is involved with pro bono activities, through the IndyBar, their law school, and potentially work experience with legal providers for the poor, etc.

Law Firm — This firm’s management shows wholehearted support of pro bono service by the efforts of its partners and associates. The firm accepts pro bono cases from many avenues, shows support by naming a pro bono coordinator, participates as a firm in advice programs, in addition to individual’s participation in case representation pro bono.

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  1. Frankly, it is tragic that you are even considering going to an expensive, unaccredited "law school." It is extremely difficult to get a job with a degree from a real school. If you are going to make the investment of time, money, and tears into law school, it should not be to a place that won't actually enable you to practice law when you graduate.

  2. As a lawyer who grew up in Fort Wayne (but went to a real law school), it is not that hard to find a mentor in the legal community without your school's assistance. One does not need to pay tens of thousands of dollars to go to an unaccredited legal diploma mill to get a mentor. Having a mentor means precisely nothing if you cannot get a job upon graduation, and considering that the legal job market is utterly terrible, these students from Indiana Tech are going to be adrift after graduation.

  3. 700,000 to 800,000 Americans are arrested for marijuana possession each year in the US. Do we need a new justice center if we decriminalize marijuana by having the City Council enact a $100 fine for marijuana possession and have the money go towards road repair?

  4. I am sorry to hear this.

  5. I tried a case in Judge Barker's court many years ago and I recall it vividly as a highlight of my career. I don't get in federal court very often but found myself back there again last Summer. We had both aged a bit but I must say she was just as I had remembered her. Authoritative, organized and yes, human ...with a good sense of humor. I also appreciated that even though we were dealing with difficult criminal cases, she treated my clients with dignity and understanding. My clients certainly respected her. Thanks for this nice article. Congratulations to Judge Barker for reaching another milestone in a remarkable career.

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