From the President – December, 2015

Leadership Academy & Barberton Incubator Give New Lawyers a Helping Hand

If you have been reading these columns, you will note that I have tried to keep you up to date on the developments in your Bar Association. In the months since I took office, I have experienced a deeper appreciation for all of the former Presidents with respect to the responsibilities in the day to day operation. Allen asked me the other day if I was tired, and I said that was an understatement. Our association is vibrant and active and has so many important issues we need to look at together.

As you know, of particular interest to our organization is the development of new lawyers and the opportunities provided through our Leadership Academy as well as our new lawyer incubator program in Barberton, Ohio. The Bench, including Judge Amy Corrigal Jones and Judge Joy Oldfield, are hosting a Leadership Academy meeting at the respective courthouses which will definitely be informative and educational for the members of the Academy. This is the kind of interaction that needs to occur to maintain relevancy with our new members. Once again, the Bar Association hosted a New Admittee Celebration that took place on November 19, 2015, thanks to the efforts of Thomas Petropoulos, Member Engagement Coordinator. The event was well attended not only by new lawyers but also by members, judges, section chairs, and committee chairs. It was enjoyable, the food and conversation was good, and it was clearly informative for the new members.

We will no longer be referring to our Barberton endeavor as the “Incubator” because the Austin Professional Center located at 103 5th Street SE in Barberton, is now known as the “Law Offices of Angelina Gingo, Law Offices of Jennifer Schartiger, and Law Offices of Jamison Johnson.” We urge that you stop in to visit these new lawyers if you are in the area of the Austin Professional Center. We believe that this model is something we could possibly duplicate in Akron and northern Summit County. Other than the Columbus and Cleveland Bar Associations, Akron is the only other Metro Bar Association in the State of Ohio with this program. Neither Columbus nor Cleveland have quite the independent standing facility that is now enjoyed by these three lawyers, thanks to the Barberton Community Foundation’s generosity and support as well as the support of our Association and the Akron Bar Foundation.

The task forces are preparing their report in Bar Operations, Bar Governance, and Bar Trends. Of particular interest to me, beyond the overall operations, is studying how best to organize and serve our continuing legal education needs as well as development of our client base. To that end there has been a specific task force addressing these issues, including the Lawyer Referral Service, which we think could work in conjunction with the incubator program. These are not services that we would like to see focused on just the new lawyer but also the existing lawyer and even our senior practitioners who could add their expertise to leadership of the next generation of lawyers.

One of the opportunities I had the honor to participate in was an Interfaith Council trip to Washington hosted by Marty Belsky, the Chair of our Diversity Committee. This involved a meeting at the Anti-Defamation League as well as a private meeting at the State Department for a briefing on the Middle East and finally concluding at the Holocaust Museum. All Americans should be aware of the issues that are facing our country and our world arising out of the intolerance that seems to be rampant in the Middle East. We should not let that intolerance come to America. In fact, we should be ever vigilant of the kind of fear that led to the Japanese American internment camps during World War II here in the United States.

I trust that your family had a wonderful Thanksgiving, and on behalf of the Akron Bar Association and all of the staff, we wish you and yours a very safe, happy, and Merry Christmas and may the New Year bring nothing but good things to all.

Larry Scanlon, ABA President

Lawrence Scanlon

Larry Scanlon, the 2015/2016 Akron Bar Association President, is the Managing Partner at Scanlon & Elliott.

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