by Daniel DeWoskin
President, DeKalb Bar Association
As my year as president comes to a close, I have several thoughts that I wanted to share with all of you. At times, it has been difficult to come up with ideas for topics for this newsletter. This time, I have had no trouble at all as I think about how grateful I am for the opportunity I was given to lead this past year.
First, let me say that I have thoroughly enjoyed serving as president of the DeKalb Bar Association this past year. I always look forward to our meetings and social events where I get to see so many friends and colleagues. It has truly been an honor to serve the organization in a leadership capacity. Having said that, I am also excited to see someone else take the reigns and bring a renewed enthusiasm to the Bar.
I am grateful for the opportunity to lead this past year. I have thoroughly enjoyed serving as president of the DeKalb Bar Association.”
It has been a wonderful year with fantastic speakers and events. Our Bar has an outstanding reputation in the community and we continue to honor this reputation with robust participation of our members. Our luncheons are often overflowing, which is a good thing, and we have had nothing but positive feedback on the new catering arrangement. For that, we are indebted to Cindy for her hard work as executive director.
While I am mentioning Cindy, I would be remiss if I did not say just what an asset we have in her. Cindy’s work for our Bar, the board, and the membership makes everything run smoothly and shows a dedication that is beyond compare. I have benefited from her work for several years as a board member, but as president I genuinely got to see just how easy she makes life for the rest of us. Cindy’s dedication shows in all her work, but especially with respect to the Bench and Bar Dinner. That many of us will never know just how much work goes into organizing this event year after year without any real glitches is a credit to Cindy’s diligence and planning.
Next, I would like to thank the members of the board. We were never at a loss for a quorum at any of our meetings, some of which took place after work hours and others that required early morning conference calls at times when kids are fighting in a car on the way to school, coffee is not yet brewed and in a cup, and nobody should have to do anything that requires much thought. Our board is active and cares about the programming, attendance, and character of the Bar. I am pleased to report that despite the changes to the board that will come this year, the new members will bring fresh ideas and more opportunities for us to grow and improve on an already fantastic local organization.
It has been a very active year for the DeKalb legal community as well as the State Bar overall. We had Lester Tate as one of our speakers discussing the Judicial Qualifications Commission, which is now in the midst of what might be an overwhelming and unprecedented change in its character. Our final speaker of the year, Mary Margaret Oliver, will almost certainly be providing us with background information that we have not been privy to from newspapers and other sources at the luncheon. And all of this takes place now while we wait for dust to settle after some contentious elections in which many of us took a heartened interest. I was always pleased to see so many of our members in attendance at different candidate forums and political gatherings. Although our organization is not involved in the politics itself, our members themselves are actively engaged in the process, which unquestionably enhances our role as leaders in the community.
For myself, I can say that I look forward to coming to our luncheons where I can actually eat with my friends and sit down instead of fretting about greetings, announcements, sufficient seating and food, and some of the other responsibilities that come with being president. I intend to continue to socialize with our sponsors, many of whom have graciously helped me set up a last minute table or even watched my young daughter to make sure she did not set off any fire alarms while I introduced a speaker.
Finally, I just want to reiterate how important it is for our members to continue to take advantage of what the Bar has to offer. We welcome you to write articles, suggest events or opportunities to get involved, or let us know how the Bar can be more inclusive. We have done a good job reaching out to the DeKalb Lawyers Association and have laid the foundation for further cooperative events. The more involved we can be with other bar associations, the better the value for our members with respect to networking and community outreach. We have a wonderful and strong organization and I expect it to remain so for as long as our members and leadership keeps up the level of commitment. For my part, I am grateful to you all for everything you do.