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From top to bottom:
Victoria Reggie Kennedy delivers the 2012 MBA Annual Dinner keynote. PHOTO © MIKE RITTER 2012.

Speaker Robert A. DeLeo (right) accepts the MBA Legislator of the Year Award from MBA President Richard P. Campbell (left). PHOTO © MIKE RITTER 2012.

Left: A Massachusetts State Police Honor Guard presents the colors. Right: Karen Morris sings the National Anthem. PHOTO © MIKE RITTER 2012.

MBA President Richard P. Campbell speaks at the MBA's hallmark event. PHOTO © MIKE RITTER 2012.

From left to right: MBA Chief Operating Officer and Chief Legal Counsel Martin W. Healy, MBA Vice President Jeffery N. Catalano, MBA President Richard P. Campbell, Supreme Judicial Court Chief Justice Roderick L. Ireland, Speaker Robert A. DeLeo, 2012 MBA Annual Dinner Keynote Speaker Victoria Reggie Kennedy, MBA Vice President Marsha V. Kazarosian, MBA President-elect Robert L. Holloway Jr., MBA Treasurer Douglas K. Sheff and MBA Secretary Robert W. Harnais. Photo by Merrill Shea.

MBA 2012 Annual Dinner features keynote speaker Victoria Reggie Kennedy and presentation of the Legislator of the Year Award to Speaker Robert A. DeLeo

View a slideshow of event photos.

More than 800 members of the legal community gathered at the Westin Boston Waterfront on May 31 for the Massachusetts Bar Association's 2012 Annual Dinner, where Victoria Reggie Kennedy gave an inspiring keynote address on the role of lawyers in society and Speaker Robert DeLeo, D-Winthrop, was honored with the MBA Legislator of the Year Award.

The MBA Annual Dinner also featured the Annual Access to Justice Awards (see accompanying article).

The MBA thanks its 2012 Annual Dinner Sponsors for helping to make the association's hallmark event a success.

"For so many members of the bar -- especially members of the Massachusetts bar -- a career in the law is more than a career. At its most meaningful moments, it's a calling. Lawyers -- more often than any other profession -- have made their work, the work of this country. It was true of lawyers like John Hancock and John Adams, who helped found this nation. It was true of lawyers like Richard Olney and Louis Brandeis, who helped found this association," said Kennedy, co-founder and president of the Board of Trustees of the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United State Senate in Boston.

"It is a grand tradition. Franklin Roosevelt -- a lawyer himself -- knew something about it. 'In every member of the bar,' he said, 'there is the character of a public servant.' Looking at that history -- and looking around this room  -- I think that's exactly right. It is no coincidence that, generation after generation, lawyers have done far more than their civic duty.  It is not by chance that this association has, for 102 years, made this state fairer and freer."

Kennedy went on to implore members of the Massachusetts bar to continue its proud tradition -- illustrated by the works of Kennedy's late husband Sen. Edward M. Kennedy -- of entering the public arena and advancing the public good.

"We are Americans. This is what we do. We reach the moon. We scale the heights. I know it. I've seen it. I've lived it. And we can do it again," said Kennedy, quoting her husband.

MBA President Richard P. Campbell welcomed Kennedy, who said his words provided "the nicest introduction I've ever received in my entire life."

"She is first and foremost, a woman of consummate grace, composure, and dignity such that each of us in this hall tonight feel a sense of kinship with her. We feel like we know her even if we have never met her," Campbell said. "Victoria Reggie Kennedy is a renowned ambassador for civility, for civic engagement as it is meant to be, and for pursuit of the commonweal (the public good)."

Kennedy's address followed Campbell's presentation of the Legislator of the Year Award to DeLeo, whom he called "a true leader with that magic mix of a keen intellect and extraordinary people skills."

DeLeo was honored -- his second time receiving the award -- for partnering with Supreme Judicial Court Chief Justice Roderick L. Ireland to craft the Court Reform Act of 2011, and issue that had been studied for nearly 50 years. He was also recognized for commissioning a blue ribbon task force to study alimony reform, also successfully enacted in 2011.

"Since his election as speaker, he has demonstrated an unfailing commitment to the concerns of practicing lawyers and to the 'administration of justice' for the benefit all of our citizens," Campbell said of DeLeo. "He devotes countless hours to many different issues and approaches each of them, no matter how large or small, with an abiding sense of purpose, vigor and compassion. His talents inure to the great benefit of Massachusetts citizens."

"Although I am truly humbled to receive this award, it is an honor that belongs to all my colleagues in the House. The House has worked so hard over the past year to create and pass legislation that has helped make the Massachusetts justice system the best in the nation," DeLeo said. "We have approached the courts from one basic position; that is, that they, as exemplified by the Supreme Judicial Court, represent the best in American jurisprudence. One does not tinker lightly with a court system anchored by the oldest appellate court in the Western hemisphere."

The event also featured the presentation of the colors by the Massachusetts State Police Honor Guard. Soloist Karen Morris sang the National Anthem.

Click here to view event photos.


Click here to read Campbell's 2012 Annual Dinner introduction of Speaker DeLeo. Click here to view Speaker Deleo's 2012 Legislator of the Year Award acceptance remarks.

Click here
for Campbell's introduction of 2012 MBA Annual Keynote Speaker Victoria Reggie Kennedy. Click here to read Kennedy's address.


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The 2012 Access to Justice Awards were presented by MBA President Richard P. Campbell (left in all photos) and MBA President-elect Robert L. Holloway Jr. (right in all photos).

From top to bottom: Pro Bono Award for Law Firms: Brody, Hardoon, Perkins & Kesten LLP, Boston (accepted by founding partner Laurence E. Hardoon); Legal Services Award: Thomas Mela, Massachusetts Advocates for Children, Boston; Pro Bono Publico Award: Linda C. Hickman, Neighborhood Legal Services, Lynn; Defender Award: Dulcinea (Duci) Goncalves, Quincy Youth Advocacy Department, Committee of Public Counsel Services; Prosecutor Award: Michael L. Fabbri, Middlesex District Attorney's Office.


2012 Access to Justice Award winners honored at May 31 Annual Dinner

Four attorneys and one law firm were honored with the Massachusetts Bar Association's Access to Justice Awards for their exemplary delivery of legal services at the May 31 Annual Dinner. MBA President Richard P. Campbell and MBA President-elect Robert L. Holloway Jr. presented the awards at the Westin Boston Waterfront.

Victoria Reggie Kennedy, who provided the Annual Dinner keynote address, said she was inspired by the honorees. "I congratulate them for receiving Access to Justice Awards this evening, but most of all, I congratulate and thank them for the work they all do make sure that all people in our community have access to justice," Kennedy said.

Pro Bono Award for Law Firms
Brody, Hardoon, Perkins & Kesten LLP, Boston

The 13-member firm was recognized for its work as one of only six law firms involved in a unique pro bono collaboration with the Middlesex District Attorney's Office representing high-risk, complex domestic violence cases. Partner Laurence Hardoon describes the collaboration as a win-win. Says associate Greg Pagnini "to know that my client's life is immediately changed for the better because of our counsel has been the most rewarding." Since signing on as a vital piece of this much needed collaboration in 2009, Brody Hardoon's track record has been described as impressive by the Middlesex District Attorney's Office. In addition to Larry and Greg, founding partners Rick Brody, Lenny Kesten and Sam Perkins, Partner Jeremy Silverfine and associates Tom Donaghue, Kristen Harris and Peter Montgomery have all been vital to the firm's success with the program.

Legal Services Award
Thomas Mela, Massachusetts Advocates for Children, Boston

Mela's longstanding career in public service is highlighted by his work with the under-represented. As the Massachusetts Advocates for Children managing attorney and senior project director, Tom facilitates and leads three coalitions of legal aid and public interest lawyers-the Children's Law Support Program Advisory Committee, the Education Law Task Force and the School Discipline Work Group. His nomination stated, "Tom works far beyond his hours, deeply committed to making change at the systemic level and obtaining the best, sometimes life-changing, results for individual, low-income clients." In addition to his exemplary service to clients, Tom passes along his experience and example through his mentorship to less seasoned colleagues and law students.

Pro Bono Publico Award
Linda C. Hickman, Neighborhood Legal Services, Lynn

A long-time volunteer with the service's Elder Law Program, Linda has donated her services with many complex cases and has been instrumental in providing services to those who might not otherwise have access. According to her nomination, "Linda's contributions were stunning and made the difference between winning a successful outcome or losing the case."

Defender Award
Dulcinea (Duci) Goncalves, Quincy Youth Advocacy Department, Committee for Public Counsel Services

"Duci" is the attorney in charge of the Quincy Youth Advocacy Department of the Committee for Public Counsel Services. There, she supervises three attorneys and support staff and carries 15 to 20 cases at a time. Said those who nominated "Duci," "those who have worked closely with her all comment on her exceptional ability to work with her clients and their families, advocating to obtain the best short-term and long-term outcomes possible and going the extra mile to make a difference in their lives."

Prosecutor Award
Michael L. Fabbri, Middlesex District Attorney's Office

Fabbri is currently the chief trial counsel for the DA's office. The 26-year prosecutor says, "even on a bad day, it's a great profession." According to his nomination, Michael has earned the respect of his colleagues through his legendary work ethic, his integrity, his commitment to serving victims and his effort to mentor his colleagues. In addition to all the work that makes him deserving of this honor tonight, Michael is also the MBA's current chair of the Criminal Justice Section.

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Featured member benefit: Red Sox Ticket Lottery

Enter to win tickets to see the Boston Red Sox play the Chicago White Sox on July 17

The MBA is currently offering tickets to see the Boston Red Sox play the Chicago White Sox at Fenway Park on Tuesday, July 17 at 7:10 p.m. Tickets are $52 each. Due to high demand, the MBA will use a lottery method to distribute tickets to members.  

To enter the lottery, please [e-mail MBATickets] by Tuesday, June 19 at 5 p.m. Please include:

  • Your name;
  • Phone number; and
  • Number of tickets you are requesting.

There is a four ticket limit per person and each member is allowed only one lottery entry. After Tuesday, June 19, the MBA will no longer accept entries and will conduct the lottery drawing.

All winners will be contacted directly by MBA Member Services via e-mail by Friday, June 29 for payment.

Due to the large number of entries anticipated, only members whose names are drawn will be contacted.

Register for the June 14 "YLD Networking Event: Meet the 2012-13 Board of Directors"

YLD Networking June 2012

Join the MBA's Young Lawyers Division for a special networking reception on Thursday, June 14 at Max & Dylans, 15 West St., Boston.

Don't miss this opportunity to meet members of the 2012-13 Board of Directors and mingle with fellow members of the bar.

R.S.V.P. for free appetizers and two complimentary drink tickets -- good for beer, wine or sodas.

Register today; space is limited.

Click here to register.






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June Lawyers Journal now available

The June issue of Massachusetts Lawyers Journal includes a feature article about cameras in the courtroom.

Learn what the March 14 Supreme Judicial Court ruling means for access to filming and streaming court proceedings, and read what opinions are bubbling up in the legal community regarding this issue.

Plus, read about the Excellence in the Law event, at which the Massachusetts Bar Association honored U.S. District Court Chief Judge Mark Wolf and The Boston Globe columnist Kevin Cullen.

In addition, learn more about the progress of the state budget being finalized (and what that means for court funding), as well as what came out of the MBA's latest Gateway Cities forum held in Worcester.

Click here to read the June issue.

Health Law Conference to feature keynote by professor Wendy Mariner on Supreme Court's Affordable Care Act decision

Conference to focus on use of social media in health care practice, health care needs of children with autism and more.

Health Law Conference

The Health Law Annual Conference is scheduled for Tuesday, June 26 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the MBA, 20 West St., Boston. The conference features keynote speaker Wendy Mariner, Edward R. Utley professor of Health Law, Bioethics and Human Rights at Boston University School of Public Health and professor of Socio-Medical Sciences and Community Medicine at Boston University School of Medicine. Conference topics include:

  • 8:15 a.m.: Registration
  • 8:45 a.m.: Welcome Remarks
  • 9 a.m.: Medical Records in the Cloud -- Use of Social Media in Health Care Practice
  • 10 a.m.: Finch v. Commonwealth Health Insurance Connector -- The Decision and Its Implications
  • 10:50 a.m.: Networking Break
  • 11 a.m.: Health Care Needs of Children with Autism
  • Noon: Lunch and Keynote -- Wendy Mariner speaks on the Supreme Court's decision on the Affordable Care Act
  • 1:30 p.m.: I Apologize -- A Transformation of the Medical System

Click here to register.

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MBA showcases final video in series on court funding

YouTube post focuses on the public perspective of adequate funding in the courts

The Massachusetts Bar Association has posted its final video as part of its public awareness campaign on the negative effects of underfunded courts. This video focuses on how court funding can impact the public.

View the fifth video in the MBA series below or click here.

Court funding video 5

Upcoming CLE seminar and program schedule

Register for the June 21 Taxation Practice Series seminar for information on issues related to entities and real estate.

CLE Heading

To register for the following programs, call MBA Member Services at (617) 338-0530, [e-mail membership] or visit the CLE Web site. Scroll down for program details, including dates and registration details.

Recorded program Recorded session available for purchase after live program through MBA On Demand.

Live program Real-time webcast available for purchase through MBA On Demand.


Latest in the Law: Labor & Employment Update Live program
Thursday, June 14, 5-7 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

MBA co-sponsors program: Transgender Equal Rights -- Understanding & Complying with the New Law
Thursday, June 14, 8:30 a.m.-10:30 a.m.
Boston Bar Association, 16 Beacon St., Boston

Health Law Legal Chat Series: Session V
Live program
Friday, June 15, noon-1 p.m.
NOTE: There is no on-site attendance for Legal Chats.

LOMAP Super Marketing Conference II Live program
Tuesday, June 19, noon-7 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

Law Practice Management Section Educational Series: Live program
Top 10 Practice Management Tips
Wednesday, June 20, 12:30-1:30 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

Taxation Practice Series: Live program
Tax Issues Related to Entities and Real Estate
Thursday, June 21, 4:30-6 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

MBA co-sponsors program: IMLA Land Use Seminar
Thursday, June 21-Friday, June 22
Harbor Events Centerm Portsmouth Garden Hilton, Portsmouth, N.H

Health Law Legal Chat Series: Session VI Live program
Friday, June 22, noon-1 p.m.
NOTE: There is no on-site attendance for Legal Chats.

Health Law Conference Live program
Tuesday, June 26, 9 a.m.-2 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston


MBA On Demand

Unable to attend May seminars? Practitioners who were not able to attend MBA CLE programs in May can now view select programs on MBA On Demand. MBA On Demand is an innovative MBA member benefit that offers you the opportunity to watch an MBA program from the comfort of your home or office, at a time that suits your schedule.

May CLE programming now available includes:

To view a listing of current programs offered on MBA On Demand, click here.



Open up: Getting the word out about a new practice

There are a number of swirling considerations for those attorneys opening a new law practice for the first time. And, one of the bedrock concerns is marketing. How will you get clients, so you can keep your lights on?

Here are three quick tips for opening your doors . . . and getting people through them:

  1. Most attorneys establishing new law firms start to get the word out by reaching out to existing contacts. But, before you can do that, you have to know who your existing contacts are, and how to reach them. Prior to marketing your new practice, sit down and create a complete list of your existing contacts: full name, physical and web addresses, work and personal information and related notes. Most lawyers use email accounts to store contacts; but, when you settle down to create a complete contact listing, try an Excel spreadsheet, with fully editable fields, and which can later be imported into any number of computer programs.
  2. It's still a good idea to design and disseminate an opening announcement for your new law firm. For examples, check the Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly, or your local legal periodical. If you did a thorough job creating a contacts list, you can send your opening announcement both via traditional mail and e-mail, even to preferred contact points -- if your contact list has enough depth to include that preference notation. Although it might seem counterintuitive, you should include as many links to your web presence as you can. People will type in the addresses and visit your sites. They'll Google you anyway; so, direct their search for further information.
  3. You can now better leverage that awkward period when you have a url but not yet a website, by using LaunchRock, a new service that gets you some value out of, what have traditionally been, static 'coming soon' holding pages. LaunchRock's 'social launching soon page' allows you to quickly create a launch page, encourages interested parties to promote your project and gathers data about those interested parties. Here is the list of features. (Thanks to Heidi Alexander, who alerted me to the existence of LaunchRock!)


For more law firm marketing tips, attend the FREE LOMAP's Super Marketing Conference II on June 19, hosted by the Massachusetts Bar Association. To R.S.V.P., click here.

Tip courtesy of Jared Correia, Law Office Management Assistance Program.

Published June 7, 2012


To learn more about the Law Practice Management Section, which is complimentary for all MBA members, contact LPM Section Chair Thomas J. Barbar or Vice Chair Stephen Seckler.
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Call for Adams Pro Bono Publico Awards nominations

Deadline is Saturday, June 30

To recognize outstanding commitment to volunteer legal services for the poor and disadvantaged, the Supreme Judicial Court's Standing Committee on Pro Bono Legal Services is seeking nominations for the 2012 Adams Pro Bono Publico Awards. The deadline for nominations is Saturday, June 30.

The awards will be presented in a ceremony at the John Adams Courthouse on Wednesday, Oct. 24, in conjunction with the American Bar Association's recognition of National Pro Bono Week.

Award criteria

Awardees will be selected from those who have excelled in providing volunteer services in one or more of the following ways:

  1. Volunteer participation in an activity or pro bono program which resulted in satisfying previously unmet needs or in extending services to underserved segments of the population;
  2. Successfully litigated pro bono cases that favorably affected the provision of other services to the poor; and/or
  3. Successfully achieved legislation that contributed substantially to legal services to the poor.

Nomination guidelines

Nominations should be submitted to: Robert C. Sacco, Esq., The 2012 Adams Pro Bono Publico Awards, c/o Lyon & Fitzpatrick LLP, 14 Bobala Road, Fourth Floor, Holyoke, MA 01040. Contact Crystal Barnes at (413) 536-4000, ext. 122 or [e-mail cbarnes] with questions.

Nominations submitted in 2011 remain active for consideration in the 2012 awards program provided that the nominating party submits a letter restating the intent to nominate the candidate and updating the narrative with any relevant information. Eligibility for the awards has been expanded this year to include law schools and law students.

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Section News: Upcoming meetings and special section events

Attend the June 12 Criminal Justice and Family Law section council meetings. Join in the June 13 Juvenile & Child Welfare, Immigration Law and Law Practice Management section council meetings.

Criminal Justice Section Council meeting

Tuesday, June 12, 5:30-7 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

The last meeting of the 2011-2012 Criminal Justice Section Council is scheduled for Tuesday, June 12 from 5:30 to 7 p.m. All section members are invited to attend.

To R.S.V.P., click here.


Family Law Section Council meeting

Tuesday, June 12, 5:30-7 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

The next meeting of the Family Law Section is scheduled for Tuesday, June 12 from 5:30 to 7 p.m. All section members are invited to attend.

To R.S.V.P., click here.


Juvenile & Child Welfare Section Council meeting

Wednesday, June 13, 5:30-7 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

The next meeting of the Juvenile & Child Welfare Section is scheduled for Wednesday, June 13 from 5:30 to 7 p.m. All section members are invited to attend.

To R.S.V.P., click here.


Immigration Law Section Council meeting

Wednesday, June 13, 5:15-6:45 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

The next meeting of the Family Law Section is scheduled for Wednesday, June 13 from 5:15 to 6:45 p.m. All section members are invited to attend.

To R.S.V.P., click here.


Law Practice Management Section Council meeting

Wednesday, June 13, 5:15-6:45 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

The last meeting of the 2011-2012 Criminal Justice Section Council is scheduled for Wednesday, June 13 from 5:15 to 6:45 p.m. All section members are invited to attend.

To R.S.V.P., click here.


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