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Hickey: Be one, have fun

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As I write this article, it will have been but few days since my installation as the 132nd President of the Indianapolis Bar Association. Leaders and volunteers in many different capacities came together to celebrate on that day, which marked the first joint installation of the 2010 IBA Board of Directors, Indianapolis Bar Foundation Board of Directors and Presidents of both the IBA and IBF. Special guests filled the room, including distinguished representatives of our courts, government agencies, the law school, and solo, small- and large-firm lawyers alike.

In assuming the role of President of the Association, the journey can be a long one. For me, it took me back to a steering committee many years ago, chairing various committees, serving several Board terms and serving as President of the Indianapolis Bar Foundation. I looked forward to being installed as President of the Association with much anticipation and the day did not disappoint.

As each Board member was called to take the oath, I was reminded that the strength of our Association comes from the diverse people who raised their hands and promised to serve us well, and from those who watched and applauded in support. The spirit of the legal community that day was very real and very alive. For those who were unable to attend, I would like to share my message for the occasion that consisted of three thoughts to carry us through the year:

Be One

This year, our challenge to each of you is to be one of those attorneys and judges who gets involved in the Bar - who attends our gatherings and gets to know the legal community that is our membership. The IBA brings so many opportunities to the practice of law that you simply cannot get from the next client or case.

Whether your practice is local or national, litigation or transactional, you simply cannot be an attorney in our metro area and get all you can from this profession without being a member.

Get involved and get others involved. Be one of our members who reaches out to young lawyers, brings them to events and encourages their participation in the Bar.

Be one of those members who brings new members to our Association and one who takes advantage of all that the Bar has to offer.

Have Fun

As a Board, our plan for the year is to work hard and have fun. Rather than offer a famous quote or a flowery phrase, the message is simple: our hope is that you will do the same. That you will enjoy this year and all that it has to offer. That you will enjoy our legal profession and that you will look to the Bar with the same enthusiasm and excitement that we do.

Thank You

Thanks first go to Immediate Past-President, Jim Voyles, and the 2009 Board for the year of outstanding service they just completed for the Bar. As our President, Jim brought much to our Association; he served us with a good heart and great leadership. He brought a sense of humor to all that we did, and he made the year one to remember.

Looking ahead, I know the same will be true for the incoming leadership in Mike Hebenstreit as President-Elect and Scott Chinn, our First Vice President.

Thank you to those members sworn in to represent the Association and Foundation this coming year for the hard work that they will do as volunteers and leaders of this legal community. In addition, to the many people who have answered my call to head a committee, lead a task force, or take on a project this year. Those people began dedicating their time and talents to the IBA months ago, and my appreciation goes out to them.

To our Bar professionals, who are the ever-present face of our Bar: Julie Armstrong, our Executive Director; Kari Hartman, our Assistant Executive Director; and every other staff person who answers the phone with a smile and greets our members with the warm welcome that we have come to expect. Thank you for making our Association one of the best in the country.

Finally, thank you to the IBA members. Reflecting back on the heartfelt well wishes, handshakes and hugs that filled the day, it is clear to me that the installation luncheon was a tribute to the many legal professionals who are the good friends that we call our Indianapolis Bar Association.

I am honored to serve as your President and I look forward to a great year ahead.

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  1. 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.

  2. 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?

  3. 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

  4. Justice has finally been served. So glad that Dr. Ley can finally sleep peacefully at night knowing the truth has finally come to the surface.

  5. While this right is guaranteed by our Constitution, it has in recent years been hampered by insurance companies, i.e.; the practice of the plaintiff's own insurance company intervening in an action and filing a lien against any proceeds paid to their insured. In essence, causing an additional financial hurdle for a plaintiff to overcome at trial in terms of overall award. In a very real sense an injured party in exercise of their right to trial by jury may be the only party in a cause that would end up with zero compensation.

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