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IBA: Defining Professionalism, or the 'Case of the Incredible Shrinking Crack'

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Professionalism is a very difficult word to define with any precision. Sometimes professionalism is found in the things we do. For example, treating an opposing counsel and his/her clients as people rather than enemies. Or being kind to support staff of both attorneys and Courts. And sometimes professionalism is found in just being patient when faced with a situation that might otherwise bring you to tear your hair out.

As a part of its Pause for Professionalism video series, the Professionalism Committee has recently released its third video. In this video, criminal defense attorney Bob Hammerle recounts a time when he was faced with a very difficult situation, which he dubbed the “Case of the Incredible Shrinking Crack,” where he managed to keep his cool and maintain his professionalism, ultimately prevailing on behalf of his client.

While this video focuses on a particular story from criminal defense litigation, there are civility lessons that are appropriate for everyone in the profession. Bob’s nearly forty years of experience bring insight to practitioners across the board and can lend understanding to interactions between parties in every court.

New videos will be distributed every other month and are available on the IndyBar website at http://www.indybar.org/resources/video-gallery.php. If you have any suggestions for future topics regarding professionalism and civility, please e-mail them to Caren Chopp at cchopp@indybar.org.•

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