Tippecanoe president supports local events

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Tippecanoe president supports local events

The president of the Tippecanoe County Bar Association, Randall L. Vonderheide encouraged members of that organization to attend Indiana District 4 Pro Bono Corporation’s annual meeting Oct. 27 at the Holiday Inn City Centre in Lafayette and a Nov. 4 lecture about Helen Jackson Gougar, a female lawyer from Lafayette who was the third woman to argue before the Indiana Supreme Court.

The Courts in the Classroom project of the Indiana Supreme Court also planned two events in November about Gougar. The first event was held at Tippecanoe Superior Court Nov. 5, and the second will take place at the Indiana Supreme Court’s courtroom in Indianapolis Nov. 16.

The Oct. 27 event hosted by Pro Bono District 4, which includes Tippecanoe, White, Carroll, Clinton, Montgomery, Fountain, Warren, and Benton counties, was held during the American Bar Association’s National Pro Bono Celebration, Oct. 24-30.

An afternoon CLE included an update about how the courts and legal community in Indiana have been handling mortgage foreclosure settlement conferences. Speakers for that CLE included Brian Dunkel of Neighborhood Christian Legal Clinic in Indianapolis, whose attorneys have handled settlement conferences in the last year; Diane Cowger, an attorney in one of the Marion Superior courts that handles foreclosure mediations; Joe Kellogg of Homestead Consulting, which handles mortgage workout agreements under the Housing Affordable Mortgage Program; and Elizabeth Daulton, project manager for the Indiana Supreme Court’s Mortgage Foreclosure Trial Court Assistance Project.

CLE credit for that event was offered in exchange for various volunteer opportunities, including taking on a pro bono case and/or volunteering at Talk to a Lawyer programs in the Lafayette area. A program was held at Ivy Tech Oct. 28 and another is scheduled for Purdue University in April 2011.

The evening’s events included a reception, awards program, and a CLE program by Jeffrey Dible, estate and tax attorney for Frost Brown Todd. Dible’s presentation focused on his projections regarding estate tax planning issues.

The second event the president of the Tippecanoe Bar Association highlighted was a Nov. 4 lecture about Helen Gougar, who fought for her right to vote after an election board denied her that right in 1894. In 1895, Gougar was the first woman to become a member of the Tippecanoe County Bar, and she argued the same day that because she could join the bar, she was eligible to vote.

Her case, Gougar v. Timberlake, was rejected by the trial court judge, and she appealed to the Indiana Supreme Court where she again represented herself in 1897. She ultimately lost her case and died 10 years before women received the right to vote, but she was remembered for her work as a suffragette, lecturer, author, and journalist.

On Nov. 5, Gougar’s story was again told as part of the Indiana Supreme Court’s Courts in the Classroom project. That presentation to 150 students from three area schools took place at the Tippecanoe Superior Court 3. Students were also given a tour of the courthouse in Lafayette.

The program will be presented again at the Indiana Statehouse in the Supreme Court’s courtroom Nov. 16 at 10:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. That event will include 250 students from Indianapolis area schools and is open to the public. More information about Courts in the Classroom is available at or by contacting Elizabeth R. Osborn, assistant to the Chief Justice for Court History and Public Education, at•


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  1. I think the cops are doing a great job locking up criminals. The Murder rates in the inner cities are skyrocketing and you think that too any people are being incarcerated. Maybe we need to lock up more of them. We have the ACLU, BLM, NAACP, Civil right Division of the DOJ, the innocent Project etc. We have court system with an appeal process that can go on for years, with attorneys supplied by the government. I'm confused as to how that translates into the idea that the defendants are not being represented properly. Maybe the attorneys need to do more Pro-Bono work

  2. We do not have 10% of our population (which would mean about 32 million) incarcerated. It's closer to 2%.

  3. If a class action suit or other manner of retribution is possible, count me in. I have email and voicemail from the man. He colluded with opposing counsel, I am certain. My case was damaged so severely it nearly lost me everything and I am still paying dearly.

  4. There's probably a lot of blame that can be cast around for Indiana Tech's abysmal bar passage rate this last February. The folks who decided that Indiana, a state with roughly 16,000 to 18,000 attorneys, needs a fifth law school need to question the motives that drove their support of this project. Others, who have been "strong supporters" of the law school, should likewise ask themselves why they believe this institution should be supported. Is it because it fills some real need in the state? Or is it, instead, nothing more than a resume builder for those who teach there part-time? And others who make excuses for the students' poor performance, especially those who offer nothing more than conspiracy theories to back up their claims--who are they helping? What evidence do they have to support their posturing? Ultimately, though, like most everything in life, whether one succeeds or fails is entirely within one's own hands. At least one student from Indiana Tech proved this when he/she took and passed the February bar. A second Indiana Tech student proved this when they took the bar in another state and passed. As for the remaining 9 who took the bar and didn't pass (apparently, one of the students successfully appealed his/her original score), it's now up to them (and nobody else) to ensure that they pass on their second attempt. These folks should feel no shame; many currently successful practicing attorneys failed the bar exam on their first try. These same attorneys picked themselves up, dusted themselves off, and got back to the rigorous study needed to ensure they would pass on their second go 'round. This is what the Indiana Tech students who didn't pass the first time need to do. Of course, none of this answers such questions as whether Indiana Tech should be accredited by the ABA, whether the school should keep its doors open, or, most importantly, whether it should have even opened its doors in the first place. Those who promoted the idea of a fifth law school in Indiana need to do a lot of soul-searching regarding their decisions. These same people should never be allowed, again, to have a say about the future of legal education in this state or anywhere else. Indiana already has four law schools. That's probably one more than it really needs. But it's more than enough.

  5. This man Steve Hubbard goes on any online post or forum he can find and tries to push his company. He said court reporters would be obsolete a few years ago, yet here we are. How does he have time to search out every single post about court reporters and even spy in private court reporting forums if his company is so successful???? Dude, get a life. And back to what this post was about, I agree that some national firms cause a huge problem.