JUNE EDITION • 2015
by Scott Bonder
President, DeKalb Bar Association
The end of my tenure as president of the DeKalb Bar Association draws nigh and in hindsight, if not always fore or right-there-at-the-time sight, it was a rewarding experience. We continued a wonderful tradition of informative breakfasts and lunches, hosted an impressive number of actually-happy happy hours, and had one of our best Bench and Bar dinners. As sad as I was to see the end of Jack Fishman’s long tenure as treasurer, I am equally happy that we transitioned smoothly and ushered in a new generation of DeKalb Bar caretakers (thanks for jumping in, Beth Garrett).
Thank you Cindy Harris for being the force that keeps the DeKalb Bar moving. And, of course, my thanks to our board of directors and executive committee for directing the Bar’s movement (Dax Lopez, Sherry Boston, Gunner Pak, Doug Aholt, Kathy Adams Carter, Elizabeth Marum, Debbie Gold, Dixon James, Angela Riccetti, Darren Summerville, Kyle Williams, Amran Deganian, Dana Dayagi, Charles McAleer, Jack Fishman, Beth Garrett, Dan DeWoskin and Stacy Hydrick). All of us labored mightily (usually with libations at hand) to keep the DeKalb Bar Association operating and growing.
As I prepare to quit my post, I am reminded of a few lessons learned while serving as your president that bear repeating. (First and foremost, very few lessons learned actually bear repeating. So, in an effort to honor my opening remarks as president, I will be brief.) These lessons, or to carry on with a tortured metaphor, “fish” are the gifts I take from my time serving as your president.
- You get out of any organization more than you put in via participation, but always less than you donate financially.
- The number of problems created by new leaders in any organization is inversely proportionate to their then existing ability to fix those problems.
- The ability of staff to accommodate new leaders and fix their errors is the bedrock and Band-Aid of every solid organization.
- The sense of community that makes the DeKalb Bar great derives from those members who participate in more than one event per year.
- The people in charge today were new members yesterday.
- The least awkward and most efficient expression of gratitude is to simply say
* This title is borrowed from its namesake novel by Douglas Adams. The title is taken verbatim because Mr. Adams is a better writer than I am and far more clever. This theft of words is rendered legal by this being a bit of satire because in the novel the speakers, who were actually the smarter group, were thanking the larger group, who thought they were smarter, for giving them literal fish. Here, I am the speaker and thanking you the readers, the smarter group, for merely metaphorical fish.
**For those few of you unfamiliar with the book, the title refers to the last message left for us by dolphins before they escape the earth’s destruction by an alien ship. As it turns out, the dolphins, which were a far more intelligent species than humans, communicated through a series of jumps and other stunts involving balls and hoops. Being too stupid to understand them, we thought they were doing tricks for our amusement. In Mr. Adams’ words: “The dolphins had long known of the impending demolition of Earth and had made many attempts to alert mankind to the danger . . . . The last ever dolphins message was misinterpreted as a surprisingly sophisticated attempt to do a double backward somersault through a hoop while whistling “The Star-Spangled Banner,” but in fact the message was this: ‘So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish.”
Senior Magistrate Judge C. David Wood was honored at the 2015 annual meeting of the Council of Magistrate Court Judges with the Lifetime Achievement award. This award marks a distinguished career of consistent excellence. The award for lifetime achievement is given to honor a judge who has made significant contributions to the magistrate court. These contributions, whether they have been in leadership, committee achievement, or mentorship, must have a lasting impact on the magistrate court and demonstrated a lifetime commitment to the magistrate court. This individual is a role model and inspiration to others.
Magistrate Judge Alan C. Harvey was honored with the Magistrate of the Year award. This award is given to a judge who has shown professional excellence in the contributions the judge has made to the Magistrate Courts. A judge who has given his or her time and knowledge to other judges of the Magistrate Courts. A judge who is highly respected in the justice system for being the keeper of justice.
Visit dekalbcountymagistratecourt.com for more information about the DeKalb County Magistrate Court.
Be sure to RSVP by Monday, June 15, for our monthly luncheon on Thursday, June 18, at the historic Old Courthouse on the square, 101 E. Court Square in downtown Decatur. RSVP now by clicking here to register.
You won’t want to miss what Sawicki’s has planned for the menu.