Kyle R. Guelcher, chair, Young Lawyers Division
Note from the chair
Why be a member of the Massachusetts Bar Association?
The hot topic among new lawyers is jobs. The main question is
where a new lawyer can find a job. Instead of providing an article
on networking or the like, I put together a list to help guide in
the job search process. It is not a complete list and it offers
some basic steps to take.
For instance, one of the best places to network is a bar
association. However, you might need to do more than simply shake
hands at a social function. If you want to learn more about
position in a specific area of law, for instance business law, then
volunteer with the Massachusetts Bar Association's Business Law
Section. The list below only has the general term "Massachusetts
Bar Association." Obviously, your networking should be targeted
Additionally, throughout the year, the MBA offers numerous events
and programs designed for the job seeker. Speed networking, career
panels, and hanging a shingle are a few great events for any job
seeker. The Young Lawyers Division routinely offers these
programs throughout the year.
The MBA's upcoming Centennial Conference is full of programs
ranging from networking strategies to information on LAR to social
media for lawyers. The complete list of programs can be found here.
If you would like to make suggestions for additional resources or
Web sites, please contact me directly.
Good luck in your job search.
Kyle R. Guelcher
Chair, MBA's Young Lawyers Division
YLD Panel Discussion: Hanging A Shingle With a Focus on Traps for the Unwary
Hanging a shingle is never an easy task for any practitioner,
especially someone who is new to the profession. Determining how to
obtain malpractice insurance, deciding on practice areas, figuring
out how to market on the modest budget - all are concerns for solo
practitioners. Additionally, navigating and understanding how
to set up a practice without running afoul of ethical rules
compounds the complexity of hanging a shingle.
Attend the MBA's YLD Panel Discussion: Hanging A Shingle
With a Focus on Traps for the Unwary on Wednesday, April 6
from 4 to 7 p.m. at the University of Massachusetts School of Law -
Dartmouth, 333 Faunce Corner Road, North Dartmouth. This program
will aim to answer some of those questions, providing young lawyers
with helpful tips, advice and strategies for success, as well as
the opportunity to network with other young lawyers and experienced
Join attendees for a networking reception to following the panel
Christine A. Anderson
Anderson Law Office, New Bedford
Julie A. Lynch
Law Offices of Turcotte & Lynch PC, Fall River
Terrence David Pricher
Office of the Bar Counsel, Boston
Law Office of Denise Squillante, Fall River
Terence J. Welsh
Massachusetts Bar Association Insurance Agency, Springfield
MBA & Mass Medical Society Young Professionals Networking Event
Join us for the first MBA and Mass
Medical Society networking event on Thursday, April 14 from 6 to 8
p.m. at Lir, 903 Boylston St., Boston. Bring your business cards
and enjoy appetizers and cocktails while mingling with other young
Technology for your practice: Young Lawyers Division favorites
by Kerry Mierzwa, Esq.
As young lawyers in 2011, we have a multitude of hurdles to
overcome. The transition from law school to young lawyer
encompasses so many more challenges than we probably imagined.
While some of us are trying to navigate student loans, others are
still trying to figure out the rules of Civil Procedure and
Evidence (Can we go over Hearsay one more time?). Some of us are
looking for jobs while others struggle with the ones they have and
search for a balance between all their responsibilities. In the
midst of all this, let's throw in that the field of technology is
constantly evolving at an amazing rate. Fortunately, technology
does not have to be something that presents another challenge to us
on our journey.
While we at the Massachusetts Bar Association - Young Lawyers
Division can't offer you all the solutions to life - we can share
the ones that have helped us on our journey. I asked several
members of the division to pass on what their favorite pieces of
technology were. For a variety of reasons, these are some of the
tools that assist us in our day to day activities:
- "Mine is definitely my iPhone! I'm kind of an info and
news junkie, and it lets me look things up whenever I want to,
whether trivial or more substantial. But the calendar and clock
functions probably have become most essential for me. And I
love my Flashlight app! I never have to be in the dark anymore!" -
Linnea R. Michel, Esq.
- "E-mail" - Ashley Brandin, Esq.
- "An electronic calendar is my favorite piece of technology.
From the days of actual palm calendars, to a Blackberry I used for
a few years, and now with Android software the electronic calendar
is my favorite. As life and practice gets busier and busier, the
electronic calendar helps reduce mental clutter for me, so I love
it!" - Thomas M. Hoffey, Jr., Esq.
- "I guess it really would be my Blackberry…can't live without
it: Carries my calendar, accesses the Internet, views documents,
receives faxes, delivers Sirius Satellite Radio, takes pictures,
tracks investments, calculates, makes calls" - Jake Skinner,
- "IPhone, Facebook and LinkedIn." - Kristine Ann Cummings,
- "My scanner as it turns documents into MS Word Docs, PDF files,
or Excel where it can be edited." - Kyle Guelcher, Esq.
As for me personally, I'd probably say my Blackberry is my
favorite piece of technology. I have the ability to automatically
keep track of my time -- for billing purposes -- with an
application, the internet to stay on top of news, email to stay
current with work matters, a calendar to keep the whole show
running smoothly and a flashlight to prevent injuries in the dark.
Although technology is constantly changing, it's not impossible to
keep up with some of the trends that can help us navigate our first
years as attorneys. We at the YLD will do our best to help you with
Young Lawyers: Find a Lifeline –- Get Involved!
by Brigid Mitchell, associate attorney, Denise Squillante
The life of an attorney can be isolating at times and for many
of us this can be an unwelcome part of the practice. For those of
us that transitioned into the practice after years of being a
student, the transition can be a bumpy road as it requires major
life changes. Many of the pressures of being a student are
different from those we experience as practicing attorneys and the
change in our everyday life can be dramatic.
In my experience, I find that my social circle has shrunk
considerably since entering private practice or even since entering
law school. I have wrestled with why this has happened throughout
my journey from college student to law student to practicing
attorney but I cannot pinpoint any one reason. However, I do know
that the practice itself can be very isolating for a variety of
reasons including the public's perceptions about attorneys.
Many of my young colleagues have had similar experiences and we
find solace in one another in adjusting to our new life as
practicing attorneys. One particular place I have found to be a
tremendous lifeline is the Massachusetts Bar Association and in
particular the Young Lawyers Division.
Bar association involvement - on all levels - can provide
attorneys at all stages of their careers with an invaluable support
system. Many lasting friendships and connections are to be made
through bar association involvement. I for one have met so many
amazing people through my experiences with bar association work. It
is very comforting to know there are other people in a similar
situation with similar experiences and it helps to know you are not
alone. I so enjoy networking and socializing with other attorneys
outside of the adversarial process. Stepping outside of an
adversarial role with other lawyers promotes civility and can work
against negative perceptions people may have about attorneys. This
can be achieved through bar involvement and volunteerism.
The difficult transition into practice makes bar involvement
early in one's career that much more important. The isolation and
pressure of the practice cause many people to leave the practice.
Therefore, it is our responsibility as active participants in bar
associations to educate our fellow young lawyers about the
significance of bar involvement and bar leadership as a safety net
for lawyers. If this safety net is put into place right away -
beginning with law school - fewer people may leave the
There are so many benefits to bar involvement beyond providing a
lifeline and support network. Bar involvement serves to enhance and
enrich the lives of all lawyers alike on both a professional
and personal level.
Admitted to the bar in December 2009, Mitchell is an
associate attorney at Denise Squillante PC in Fall River, where she
focuses in the areas of family law and personal injury. A member of
the MBA's Young Lawyers Division Board of Directors, Miitchell is
also a General Practice, Solo & Small-Firm Section Council
The MBA is on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn
Join the conversation today
The Massachusetts Bar Association now has a presence on three
social networking platforms, including Facebook, launched in October 2010, LinkedIn, launched in January 2010, and Twitter,
launched in July 2009. All three social media platforms feature
information about the MBA including CLE, events and news.
As an MBA member, we encourage you to both post items of
interest to you, and the greater legal community, on these pages
and comment on items already posted.
Put your name out there
The goal of the YLD Board is to offer members opportunities for
professional growth and development through participation in
division activities. One opportunity available to members is
publishing articles which are of interest to fellow practitioners.
The MBA provides several forums for articles by YLD members -
Young Lawyers e-Journal, Lawyers Journal and the
Massachusetts Law Review.
If you are interested in writing an article for any of these
publications or if you have seen articles which you think may be of
interest to other MBA members, please contact
Jean Stevens for more information regarding this
MBA May 18-19 Centennial conference to feature two-days of concurrent educational tracks; the Access to Justice Awards Luncheon and "Hail to the Chiefs" Bench-Bar Panel on May 18; Centennial Ball on May 19
The MBA's Centennial Conference, a celebration of the MBA's
century of service to the public, profession and rule of law, will
take place on Wednesday, May 18 and Thursday, May 19 at the Boston
Click here to
Conference programming includes:
** Massachusetts lawyers who are MBA members can earn up to a
7.5 percent premium credit on Massachusetts professional liability
insurance offered by CNA through the MBA Insurance Agency. You can
earn a 5 percent premium credit by attending the Building a Solid
Foundation: Managing Law Practice Risk session plus one other
Substantive Track session. If more than one-third of your firm's
attorneys attend, you can earn up to a 7.5 percent premium credit.
This offer is valid for new and renewed lawyers' professional
liability insurance policies with an effective date of Aug. 1, 2011
to July 31, 2012. This offer may not be combined with any other
malpractice prevention/CLE premium credits. **