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IBA: Metz, Zweig IndyBar Professionalism Award Winners

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Professionalism can be difficult to define, but it’s easy to spot. When it comes to the 2012 recipients of the Indianapolis Bar Association Professionalism Awards, professionalism is a characteristic that quickly rises to the top when they are considered by their peers.

Chosen by the bar’s Professionalism Committee, the 2012 recipient of the Silver Gavel Award is the Hon. Anthony Metz III of the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Indiana, while the 2012 Professionalism Award will be presented to Sally Zweig of Katz & Korin PC. Both recipients were roundly praised for their professionalism by the committee, which is chaired by David K. Herzog of Faegre Baker Daniels LLP.

Judge Metz has served as U.S. Bankruptcy Court Judge since 1997, with 2012 marking his retirement. His time on the bench will be closed out by serving as chief judge of that court since May 2010. A native of Indianapolis, Judge Metz served as a Commissioner on the Marion Circuit Court and a Judge in the Marion Superior Court before joining the federal bench. Judge Metz’s law career includes several years as a private practice attorney and as an assistant attorney general in the Indiana Attorney General’s Office.

Judge Metz earned his J.D. from Indiana University Maurer School of Law—Bloomington and has been involved with numerous professional and civic organizations throughout his career, including the National Conference of Bankruptcy Judges, the Indiana University Alumni Association, the Eiteljorg Museum and the Indianapolis Zoological Society.

Judge Metz’s involvement with the IndyBar has spanned numerous committees, task forces and boards since the late 1980s, including service on the IndyBar Board of Directors in 1989, 1990, 2010 and 2011 and on the Indianapolis Bar Foundation Board from 1995 to 1997. Judge Metz received the Paul H. Buchanan Jr. Award of Excellence, the bar’s highest honor, in 2001.

For Judge Metz, professionalism has continued to play an important role throughout his career, whether in private practice or on the bench.

“Attorneys should be doing their best when they are representing their clients, and judges should be doing their best when they are deciding cases. Being a professional comes with the responsibility to do your job to the best of your ability whether you are a lawyer or a judge,” says Metz. “Also, being a judge does not come with a pass on treating attorneys and litigants in a courteous manner. To do otherwise would be highly unprofessional.”

Zweig, a graduate of the Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law and a current member of the bar’s Board of Directors, concentrates her practice in complex commercial litigation and health care law, while also representing clients with administrative and governmental contract concerns.

“To communicate professionalism, I aspire with every interaction to walk away thinking that there is nothing I would have said or done differently. Mind you, that is not always the case, but that is explicitly my goal,” says Zweig, commenting on the role that professionalism plays in her career. “I learned early on that table-banging and other shenanigans never signal strength or skilled advocacy. That stuff is simply ineffective and the refuge of the lazy.”

Zweig’s legal community service is wide-ranging. She recently accepted an appointment to the Indiana Pro Bono Commission after having served on the Indiana Supreme Court Disciplinary Commission from 2000 to 2011. In addition to extensive involvement in the legal community, Zweig serves the community through a number of local organizations, including the Indianapolis Art Center, the Immigrant Welcome Center and the Festival Music Society.

Prior to becoming a lawyer, Zweig was one of the founders of Indiana’s first Guardian Ad Litem/Court Appointed Special Advocate project, which laid the groundwork for providing independent representation and services statewide to children in the juvenile court system due to abuse and neglect.

Judge Metz and Zweig will be honored at the bar’s Professionalism Luncheon, to be held Thursday, October 11 at noon at the Columbia Club. The luncheon will also feature special guest speaker Hon. Sarah Evans Barker of the United States District Court for the Southern District of Indiana. Registration can be found online at www.indybar.org.•

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  1. So that none are misinformed by my posting wihtout a non de plume here, please allow me to state that I am NOT an Indiana licensed attorney, although I am an Indiana resident approved to practice law and represent clients in Indiana's fed court of Nth Dist and before the 7th circuit. I remain licensed in KS, since 1996, no discipline. This must be clarified since the IN court records will reveal that I did sit for and pass the Indiana bar last February. Yet be not confused by the fact that I was so allowed to be tested .... I am not, to be clear in the service of my duty to be absolutely candid about this, I AM NOT a member of the Indiana bar, and might never be so licensed given my unrepented from errors of thought documented in this opinion, at fn2, which likely supports Mr Smith's initial post in this thread: http://caselaw.findlaw.com/us-7th-circuit/1592921.html

  2. When I served the State of Kansas as Deputy AG over Consumer Protection & Antitrust for four years, supervising 20 special agents and assistant attorneys general (back before the IBLE denied me the right to practice law in Indiana for not having the right stuff and pretty much crushed my legal career) we had a saying around the office: Resist the lure of the ring!!! It was a take off on Tolkiem, the idea that absolute power (I signed investigative subpoenas as a judge would in many other contexts, no need to show probable cause)could corrupt absolutely. We feared that we would overreach constitutional limits if not reminded, over and over, to be mindful to not do so. Our approach in so challenging one another was Madisonian, as the following quotes from the Father of our Constitution reveal: The essence of Government is power; and power, lodged as it must be in human hands, will ever be liable to abuse. We are right to take alarm at the first experiment upon our liberties. I believe there are more instances of the abridgement of freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments by those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations. Liberty may be endangered by the abuse of liberty, but also by the abuse of power. All men having power ought to be mistrusted. -- James Madison, Federalist Papers and other sources: http://www.constitution.org/jm/jm_quotes.htm RESIST THE LURE OF THE RING ALL YE WITH POLITICAL OR JUDICIAL POWER!

  3. My dear Mr Smith, I respect your opinions and much enjoy your posts here. We do differ on our view of the benefits and viability of the American Experiment in Ordered Liberty. While I do agree that it could be better, and that your points in criticism are well taken, Utopia does indeed mean nowhere. I think Madison, Jefferson, Adams and company got it about as good as it gets in a fallen post-Enlightenment social order. That said, a constitution only protects the citizens if it is followed. We currently have a bevy of public officials and judicial agents who believe that their subjectivism, their personal ideology, their elitist fears and concerns and cause celebs trump the constitutions of our forefathers. This is most troubling. More to follow in the next post on that subject.

  4. Yep I am not Bryan Brown. Bryan you appear to be a bigger believer in the Constitution than I am. Were I still a big believer then I might be using my real name like you. Personally, I am no longer a fan of secularism. I favor the confessional state. In religious mattes, it seems to me that social diversity is chaos and conflict, while uniformity is order and peace.... secularism has been imposed by America on other nations now by force and that has not exactly worked out very well.... I think the American historical experiment with disestablishmentarianism is withering on the vine before our eyes..... Since I do not know if that is OK for an officially licensed lawyer to say, I keep the nom de plume.

  5. I am compelled to announce that I am not posting under any Smith monikers here. That said, the post below does have a certain ring to it that sounds familiar to me: http://www.catholicnewworld.com/cnwonline/2014/0907/cardinal.aspx

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