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Chinn: 3 Ways to Help at the End of 2012

Scott Chinn
December 19, 2012
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iba-chinn-scottAt bottom, the IndyBar is a member service organization. The IndyBar Board of Directors and staff spend considerable time trying to find ways to serve the membership, including by soliciting feedback. That is mission critical – and it should never change.

But as we near the end of the year, I want to turn the tables a bit and ask you to consider three ways that you could help the IndyBar. I hope (and believe) that these end-of-the-year “asks” are reasonable, even as we all appropriately focus on closing out various professional obligations and draw close to our families for the holidays.

First, please renew your IndyBar membership. If you haven’t already sent in the renewal form (or renewed online at www.IndyBar.org), then the notice is sitting on your desk or is in your briefcase. Please take a moment to renew your membership before the end of the year. We need you, and want to continue to serve you. And when you are reviewing your notice, pay special attention to the Section Plus CLE pilot program involving four of our substantive sections. In those sections in 2013, you can get a minimum of four one-hour CLEs built in to your section dues payment.

Second, please consider making a contribution to the Indianapolis Bar Foundation. Several weeks ago, I highlighted in this space the good works the IBF does for the IndyBar and for the legal community. There is simply a direct correlation between your contribution to the IBF and the number of people in our community that we can assist in pro bono, educational and other programs. I know, of course, that many charitable organizations are also making their year-end pushes as well – and there are many worthy causes. My ask on this score is as follows: if you’ve given to the IBF before, please consider making a contribution commensurate with your prior support; if you aren’t a regular IBF contributor, please give something. To donate online, visit http://www.indybar.org/about/bar-foundation.

Finally, I’ve mentioned a few times the work of our Lawyers Helping Lawyers Task Force. I am thrilled to announce that the first initiative of the Task Force will be launched in Feb. 2013. Initiative number one has been dubbed the Attorney Apprentice Program, an effort to provide skills training for lawyers. The kickoff begins with a program on Friday, Feb. 22, 2013 from 1 to 4 p.m. at the IndyBar offices and is aimed at new or inexperienced lawyers and upcoming law school graduates. We anticipate the agenda to include sessions on networking, law practice management and an introduction to litigation. Subsequent offerings will include transactional, civil litigation and criminal practice tracks.

On a final note, let me say how much I’ve enjoyed being IndyBar President this year. In January, I remarked how much I love lawyers, because they help people. In meeting many new lawyers and delving more deeply into our profession this year, that view has only been reinforced. Thank you for the opportunity to serve. Best wishes to Kerry Blomquist as she takes the gavel in 2013.

That’s it. No more asks from me for this year. Thanks for your membership and your support of the legal community. Have a wonderful and peaceful holiday season.•
 

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  1. Your article is a good intro the recent amendments to Fed.R.Civ.P. For a much longer - though not necessarily better -- summary, counsel might want to read THE CHIEF UMPIRE IS CHANGING THE STRIKE ZONE, which I co-authored and which was just published in the January issue of THE VERDICT (the monthly publication of the Indiana Trial Lawyers Association).

  2. Thank you, John Smith, for pointing out a needed correction. The article has been revised.

  3. The "National institute for Justice" is an agency for the Dept of Justice. That is not the law firm you are talking about in this article. The "institute for justice" is a public interest law firm. http://ij.org/ thanks for interesting article however

  4. I would like to try to find a lawyer as soon possible I've had my money stolen off of my bank card driver pressed charges and I try to get the information they need it and a Social Security board is just give me a hold up a run around for no reason and now it think it might be too late cuz its been over a year I believe and I can't get the right information they need because they keep giving me the runaroundwhat should I do about that

  5. It is wonderful that Indiana DOC is making some truly admirable and positive changes. People with serious mental illness, intellectual disability or developmental disability will benefit from these changes. It will be much better if people can get some help and resources that promote their health and growth than if they suffer alone. If people experience positive growth or healing of their health issues, they may be less likely to do the things that caused them to come to prison in the first place. This will be of benefit for everyone. I am also so happy that Indiana DOC added correctional personnel and mental health staffing. These are tough issues to work with. There should be adequate staffing in prisons so correctional officers and other staff are able to do the kind of work they really want to do-helping people grow and change-rather than just trying to manage chaos. Correctional officers and other staff deserve this. It would be great to see increased mental health services and services for people with intellectual or developmental disabilities in the community so that fewer people will have to receive help and support in prisons. Community services would like be less expensive, inherently less demeaning and just a whole lot better for everyone.

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