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Law Day celebrated today

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For the 51st year of the national observance of Law Day, about three dozen Indiana attorneys, judges, and paralegals presented the Indiana Supreme Court's "Why Lincoln was a Lawyer" program to 125 different classes - almost 3,000 students - around the state.

To mark the 200th anniversary of President Abraham Lincoln's birth in February, more than 500 Indiana State Bar Association members presented the program to 26,000 school-aged children. Lincoln, "A Legacy of Liberty," is also the American Bar Association's theme for Law Day 2009.

Since its inception by President Dwight Eisenhower in 1958, the purpose of Law Day is for the legal community to reach out to students and others to tell them what lawyers and judges do, and how the courts operate.

Volunteers who spoke to Indiana students about Lincoln's role as a lawyer also answered questions from students about what lawyers and judges do. The average participant spoke to three or four classes.

"It's a great opportunity for the legal community to interact with young kids and high school students," said Elizabeth Osborn, assistant to the Indiana chief justice for court history and public education.

"We had an overwhelming response from attorneys and judges" to the February program, she said. "To get out and talk to students, they say it helped remind them how much students appreciate it when they can ask questions in person."

She added most of the students only know about lawyers and judges through legal dramas and reality-based court shows like "Judge Judy."

Teachers have also e-mailed Osborn, thanking the judges and attorneys for taking time from their busy schedules to talk to their students.

For the May 1 program, "We had no problem getting students and lawyers to participate," and most lawyers would self-match with schools they knew or where they wanted to speak.

Based on the February program's success, Osborn only expected, "maybe another 500 to 1,000 students for this, so I was thrilled to have another 3,000 students." Students in the May program did not participate in the February presentation.

Lesson plans for today's event and past educational events are available on the court's Web site.

While there aren't any other formal presentations scheduled for the near future, a speakers bureau of judges is available to classrooms upon request. For more information, contact Jennifer Bauer of the Indiana Judicial Center at (317) 232-1313, or jbauer@courts.state.in.us.

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  1. Hysteria? Really Ben? Tell the young lady reported on in the link below that worrying about the sexualizing of our children is mere hysteria. Such thinking is common in the Royal Order of Jesters and other running sex vacays in Thailand or Brazil ... like Indy's Jared Fogle. Those tempted to call such concerns mere histronics need to think on this: http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/a-12-year-old-girl-live-streamed-her-suicide-it-took-two-weeks-for-facebook-to-take-the-video-down/ar-AAlT8ka?li=AA4ZnC&ocid=spartanntp

  2. This is happening so much. Even in 2016.2017. I hope the father sue for civil rights violation. I hope he sue as more are doing and even without a lawyer as pro-se, he got a good one here. God bless him.

  3. I whole-heartedly agree with Doug Church's comment, above. Indiana lawyers were especially fortunate to benefit from Tom Pyrz' leadership and foresight at a time when there has been unprecedented change in the legal profession. Consider how dramatically computer technology and its role in the practice of law have changed over the last 25 years. The impact of the great recession of 2008 dramatically changed the composition and structure of law firms across the country. Economic pressures altered what had long been a routine, robust annual recruitment process for law students and recent law school graduates. That has, in turn, impacted law school enrollment across the country, placing upward pressure on law school tuition. The internet continues to drive significant changes in the provision of legal services in both public and private sectors. The ISBA has worked to make quality legal representation accessible and affordable for all who need it and to raise general public understanding of Indiana laws and procedures. How difficult it would have been to tackle each of these issues without Tom's leadership. Tom has set the tone for positive change at the ISBA to meet the evolving practice needs of lawyers of all backgrounds and ages. He has led the organization with vision, patience, flexibility, commitment, thoughtfulness & even humor. He will, indeed, be a tough act to follow. Thank you, Tom, for all you've done and all the energy you've invested in making the ISBA an excellent, progressive, highly responsive, all-inclusive, respectful & respected professional association during his tenure there.

  4. The is putting restrictions on vaping just because big tobacco companies are losing money. http://vapingisthefuture.com

  5. Oh, and I should add ... the stigma JLAP attaches lasts forever. As my documents show, I had good reason to reject the many conflicted diagnoses for not thinking like the state wanted me to. BUT when I resisted and raised constitutional and even ADA "regarded as" arguments I was then denied licensed in Indiana for LIFE. As in until death does us part. Evidence in comments here: http://www.theindianalawyer.com/scotus-denies-cert-to-kansas-attorney-seeking-to-practice-in-indiana/PARAMS/article/40522 Resistance is futile, comrades.

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