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Save the date: Annual Dinner set for May 9

The Massachusetts Bar Association will hold its 2013 Annual Dinner on Thursday, May 9 at the Westin Boston Waterfront, 425 Summer St., Boston.

Consider attending this annual event as a sponsor. Sponsorship opportunities include:

  • Platinum Sponsor ($5,000)
    Table for 10, full page ad in dinner program, firm logo projected at the dinner, sponsorship level recognition in Lawyers Journal and displayed on MBA website
  • Gold Sponsor ($3,500)
    Table for 10, 1/2 page ad in dinner program, firm logo projected at the dinner, sponsorship level recognition in Lawyers Journal and displayed on MBA website
  • Silver sponsor ($2,500)
    Table for 10, 1/4 page ad in dinner program, firm logo projected at the dinner
  • Table for 10 ($1,500)

Click here to register for the MBA's 2013 Annual Dinner online. For a printable PDF outlining the above sponsorship opportunities and table reservation information, click here. For additional information call (617) 338-0543.

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MBA seeks nominations for 2013-14 officer, delegate positions

Submit nominations to MBA by Friday, Feb. 22

The Massachusetts Bar Association is currently accepting nominations for officer and delegate positions for the 2013-14 membership year. Nominees must submit a letter of intent and a current resume to MBA Secretary Martha Rush O'Mara by 5 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 22, 2013 to be eligible.

To submit a nomination, mail or hand deliver the information to:

Massachusetts Bar Association
Attn: Martha Rush O'Mara, MBA Secretary
20 West St., Boston, MA 02111

If you have any questions about the nomination process, call MBA Chief Operating Officer Martin W. Healy at (617) 988-4777.

To review the Nomination & Election procedures, click here.


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The Sole Practitioner and Small Firm Section Chair Scott D. Goldberg.

The General Practice, Solo & Small-Firm section changes name, clarifies mission

The newly renamed "The Sole Practitioner and Small Firm Section" will focus on addressing the issues, challenges and concerns that more specifically affect sole practitioners and members of small firms. The section, led by Chair Scott D. Goldberg, is looking forward to having an active discussion (listserv) on My Bar Access, sharing information and providing support to its section members and presenting its annual symposium.

Goldberg presented the bases for changing the name of the General Practice, Solo & Small-Firm Section at the Nov. 15, 2012 House of Delegates meeting. "The section council believes the newly adopted name more clearly reflects our section's membership as lawyers who concentrate our practices as opposed to having a general practice, and it makes a distinction between our purposes and goals to those of the Law Practice Management Section and the Young Lawyers Division, for example," said Goldberg.

Look for more details about the section's name change in the March Lawyers Journal.

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New issue of Lawyers Journal available

The January issue of Lawyers Journal has been mailed and is available online.

Highlights include:

  • Information on how My Bar Access enhances member-to-member interaction;
  • A profile on Hon. Mary Hogan Sullivan, who presides over Massachusetts' first Vet Treatment Court;
  • A CJC decision on Hon. Raymond G. Dougan Jr., which sides with the MBA's support of preserving judicial indepence; and
  • An overview of the Feb. 21 UCC conference, co-sponsored by the MBA.

Click here to read the January issue.

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Join your section on My Bar Access

Connect, share and collaborate with fellow MBA members.

The Massachusetts Bar Association has launched My Bar Access, which replaces the section/division portion of the MBA website. Visit http://access.massbar.org/ today to join the conversation.

Check out posts on:

  • 2013 Animal Law Practice Group meetings; and
  • A Labor & Employment Meet & Greet with Regional Director Jonathan B. Kreisberg on Jan. 23.

Participate in ongoing member group discussions on:

  • The Property Law MBA On Demand Legal Chat on Short Sales;
  • Information about the Jan. 17 Young Lawyers Division board meeting and the group's upcoming ski trip on Jan. 26;
  • The Juvenile & Child Welfare Feb. 13 open meeting, which will feature BSEA Guest speaker Reece Erlichman;
  • A Health Law post on "Mandatory flu shots for hospital staff | consumer health risks?;" and
  • An overview of the Juvenile & Child Welfare Section's Jan. 18 MBA On Demand Legal Chat on the children's behavorial health initiative.

The following simple steps can instantly connect you with fellow members:

  1. Login and agree to terms: Sign in using your MBA user name and password and sign the Code of Conduct.
  2. Create your profile and settings: Include your bio and photo and customize the frequency and format of your notifications (your profile info from LinkedIn may be pulled over).
  3. Start connecting: Post blogs, discussions (listservs) or upload a resource library entry for your section(s).

Resource materials -- including "Getting Started on My Bar Access" and "How to Use My Bar Access" -- posted in various areas throughout the site, can help users with questions. Following a review of those resources, members who need further help should contact the My Bar Access Help Desk at [e-mail mybaraccess].

Click here to login now.

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R.S.V.P. for the Jan. 26 Young Lawyers Division Wachusett Ski/Ride event

Join the Massachusetts Bar Association's Young Lawyers Division at a Wachusett Ski/Ride event on Saturday, Jan. 26 from noon to 4 p.m at 499 Mountain Road in Princeton.  

Lift tickets are available for $48. You must pick-up your tickets at the Wachusett Mountain Ski Area's concierge window to receive the MBA discount.   

From 4 to 10 p.m., join the division at an après ski reception. Free appetizers will be available.

R.S.V.P. by Friday, Jan. 18 to [e-mail YLDSKI].
Registration is required as space is limited.

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Images from the 2012 Walk to the Hill. Photos by Jeff Thiebauth.

Join the MBA at the 14th Annual Walk to the Hill on Jan. 30

The 14th Annual Walk to the Hill for Civil Legal Aid is scheduled for Wednesday, Jan. 30 beginning at 11 a.m. at the Statehouse's Great Hall.

Join fellow Massachusetts Bar Association members at this annual event and advocate for increased funding for legal services throughout the commonwealth.

The event is sponsored by the Equal Justice Coalition, Massachusetts Bar Association and Boston Bar Association.

The event schedule includes:

  • 11 to 11:30 a.m.: Registration
  • 11:30 a.m. to noon: Speaking program featuring Chief Justice of the Supreme Judicial Court Roderick L. Ireland
  • Noon to 1 p.m.: Legislative visits and lunch

For more information, visit www.equaljusticecoalition.org.

MBF to honor Leo V. Boyle with Great Friend of Justice Award at 2013 Annual Meeting

2013 MBF Annual Meeting

Click here for more information and to R.S.V.P.

Upcoming CLE seminar and program schedule

Register for the Feb. 4 "11th Annual Western Massachusetts Bankruptcy Conference" for updates on issues relevant to new and experienced bankruptcy practitioners.

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.


Juvenile & Child Welfare Legal Chat Series Live program
Friday, Jan. 18, 1-2 p.m.
NOTE: There is no on-site attendance for Legal Chats.

Lifecycle of a Business Part II: Land Use/Permitting, Insurance Considerations & Business Financing Live program
Tuesday, Jan. 29, 5-7 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

Mediating Probate Litigation Cases Live program
Wednesday, Jan. 30, 4-7 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston


11th Annual Western Massachusetts Bankruptcy Conference
Monday, Feb. 4, 4-7 p.m.
Western New England University School of Law, 1215 Wilbraham Road, Springfield


MBA On Demand

Unable to attend these seminars? Purchase the recorded session available after the live program through MBA On Demand and watch the presentation from the comfort of your home or office.

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

Join the MBA's Member-Get-A-Member campaign

Refer a colleague and be rewarded.

Member get a member graphicJoin in the Massachusetts Bar Association's Member-Get-a-Member campaign. As a current member, you are the greatest testimony to the value of an MBA membership and we ask for your participation in recruiting at least one new member this association year.     

Take this opportunity to help expand the MBA's network of legal professionals statewide and strengthen our association's preeminent voice in the legal profession. Share your personal and professional MBA experiences and why you belong to the MBA with a colleague and be rewarded. See why others belong.

For every new member you recruit, you will be entered into our raffle for the following prizes:

  • Grand prize: $500 AMEX gift card
  • Second prize: $250 AMEX gift card
  • Third prize: $100 AMEX gift card

To be eligible, you must be identified as the source of the referral on the membership application.

To learn about the program, visit www.massbar.org/membergetmember
for guidelines and rules.




Marketing your niche

In deciding how to market your services, remember that less is more. Understand that having a niche will make you more memorable. It will help you differentiate yourself from other lawyers. If you are known for doing a certain kind of work, you are much more likely to get referrals.

Being known for something does not preclude you from taking other kinds of work if it happens to come your way. But take the time to define your ideal client and build all of your messaging around that niche.

The diagram below illustrates the concept of focused marketing. Talk about the clients you serve in the red circle. Accept matters that are in the brown circle; but do not invest marketing time and energy into trying to get that work. Finally, make sure to reject or refer out work that falls into the green circle.

Marketing your niche

Tip courtesy of Stephen Seckler, president, Seckler Legal Consulting and Coaching.

Published January 17, 2013


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 Cynthia E. MacCausland.
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Need conference room facilities?

Take advantage of your MBA membership and rent an MBA conference room today

MBA members may rent conference rooms at our headquarters in Boston's Downtown Crossing or at the MBA's satellite Western Mass. office in Springfield, located directly across from the Hampden County Courthouse. Both locations are equipped with complete audio-visual capabilities, comfortable accommodations and other practice-centered amenities and conveniences.

Click here to download a room reservation form.

Questions? Contact MBA Member Services at (617) 338-0530.

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News from the courts

First deputy named acting probation commissioner

Chief Justice of the Trial Court Robert A. Mulligan and Court Administrator Harry Spence have appointed Ellen G. Slaney to serve as the acting commissioner of probation on an interim basis until a permanent commissioner is named in the spring. Slaney has served as the first deputy for Acting Commissioner Ronald P. Corbett Jr., who retires this week after a two-year term as acting commissioner during which he initiated management reforms to restore professionalism and effectiveness to the state's probation service.

Slaney was appointed as a probation officer in Roxbury in 1974 and became the assistant chief probation officer there for the Juvenile Court in 1986. She was named chief probation officer for the Wrentham District Court in 1990 and regional supervisor in 1997, prior to her appointment as first deputy commissioner in 2011. Slaney holds a B.A from the University of Connecticut and an M.S. from Simmons College School of Social Work.

Recent management initiatives led by the commissioner's office included introduction of performance management metrics and accountability, a new, validated risk/need classification instrument, merit-based hiring and promotions utilizing best practices and enhanced partnerships with criminal justice agencies.

Last fall, the Trial Court retained Isaacson Miller, a nationally-recognized firm, to lead the search for a new commissioner of probation. Mulligan and Spence expect to make an appointment this spring.



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Section News: Upcoming meetings and special section events

Join in the Jan. 22 Civil Litigation, Access to Justice and Business Law section council meeting. R.S.V.P. for the Jan. 23 Probate Law meeting and Labor & Employment Section Council open meeting with Regional Director Jonathan B. Kreisberg. Attend the Jan. 24 Taxation Law meeting. Mark your calendars: Juvenile & Child Welfare open meeting featuring Reece Erlichman and Immigration Law Section Social featuring Kate Auspitz on Feb. 13.

Civil Litigation Section Council meeting

Tuesday, Jan. 22, 5-6:30 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

The next meeting of the Civil Litigation Section Council is scheduled for Tuesday, Jan. 22 from 5 to 6:30 p.m. All section members are invited to attend.

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


Access to Justice Section Council meeting

Tuesday, Jan. 22, 6-7:30 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

The next meeting of Access to Justice Section Council is scheduled for Tuesday, Jan. 22 from 6 to 7:30 p.m. All section members are invited to attend.

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


Business Law Section Council meeting

Tuesday, Jan. 22, 6-7:30 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

The next meeting of the Business Law Section Council is scheduled for Tuesday, Jan. 22 from 6 to 7:30 p.m. All section members are invited to attend.

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


Labor & Employment Section Council open meeting

Meet & Greet with Regional Director Jonathan B. Kreisberg
Wednesday, Jan. 23, 4-6 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

This event, featuring Regional Director Jonathan B. Kreisberg, is co-hosted by the Massachusetts Bar Association's Labor & Employment Section and the ABA's Regional Subcommittee on NLRA Practice.

Kreisberg is the regional director of the recently enlarged Region 1 for the National Labor Relations Board, covering all of the New England states, and is responsible for all matters arising under the National Labor Relations Act requiring his supervision of field attorneys and field examiners engaged in the investigation and litigation of unfair labor practices, Federal Court litigation and the processing of representation cases.

Kreisberg began his career with the NLRB in 1975 as a law clerk in the Administrative Law Judge's Division at the NLRB's headquarters in Washington, D.C. Upon his graduation from law school in 1977, he served for two-and-a-half years as staff counsel to former NLRB member John A. Penello, then transferred in late 1979 to the newly created Hartford subregional office as a field attorney. In 1985 he was promoted to a supervisory attorney, and in 1988 he became the first regional attorney. He is a member of the bar of the State of Connecticut and the District of Columbia and is a past chair of the Labor & Employment Law Section of the Connecticut Bar Association.

Kreisberg earned his undergraduate degree from the Cornell University School of Industrial & Labor Relations in 1974 and a law degree from the American University, Washington College of Law in 1977.

This meeting is co-sponsored by the Rhode Island Bar Association, the Maine State Bar Association, the New Hampshire Bar Association and the Vermont Bar Association.

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


Probate Law Section Council meeting

Wednesday, Jan. 23, 5-6:30 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

The next meeting of the Probate Law Section Council is scheduled for Wednesday, Jan. 23 from 5 to 6:30 p.m. All section members are invited to attend.

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


Taxation Law Section Council meeting

Thursday, Jan. 24, 5-6:30 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

The next meeting of the Taxation Law Section Council is scheduled for Wednesday, Jan. 24 from 5 to 6:30 p.m. in Worcester. All section members are invited to attend.

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


SAVE THE DATE: Juvenile & Child Welfare open meeting

Featuring Reece Erlichman, director of the Bureau of Special Education Appeals
Wednesday, Feb. 13, 5:30-7 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

You are invited to attend the Juvenile & Child Welfare Section open meeting on Wednesday, Feb. 13 from 5:30 to 7 p.m. at the MBA, 20 West St., Boston.

The guest speaker for this open meeting will be Reece Erlichman, director of the Bureau of Special Education Appeals (BSEA), an independent subdivision of the Division of Administrative law Appeals.

To R.S.V.P., click here. Space is limited.


SAVE THE DATE: Immigration Law Section Social

Featuring Kate Auspitz, issues director for Congressman Michael E. Capuano
Wednesday, Feb. 13, 5:15-7:30 p.m.
MBA, 20 West St., Boston

The Immigration Law Section Council invites you to attend the Immigration Law Section Social on Feb. 13 from 5:15 to 7:30 p.m. at the MBA, 20 West St., Boston. The  guest speaker at this event will be Kate Auspitz, issues director for Congressman Michael E. Capuano, representative, 7th Congressional District of Massachusetts.  

As many practitioners are aware, Auspitz is one of the most helpful congressional aides when a congressional assist is needed. Many are unaware Auspitz is a political historian, Fulbright fellow and Harvard Ph.D. She was an associate professor in Social Studies at Harvard College and taught in the Political Science Department at Wellesley College before leaving academia for practical politics. She now works on foreign policy, immigration and refugee issues.

Auspitz will discuss what a congressional inquiry can accomplish, how to request assistance and, as importantly, what cannot be reasonably expected from an inquiry. In addition, she will bring the latest news as to what is happening on the hill regarding comprehensive immigration reform issues.

Join Immigration Law section members at this special networking reception, where you will have the opportunity to meet fellow practitioners, expand your practice network and connect with colleagues in your practice area.

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

©2017 Massachusetts Bar Association