Conference of Local and Specialty Bar Associations

Barbara S. Anderson, Chair

Any local or specialty bar association in the Commonwealth of Virginia may be a member of the conference upon request in writing to the Executive Committee of the Conference, through the Executive Director of the VSB, supplying the names and addresses of its president and any other officers or staff. Of the 132 bar associations of which the Virginia State Bar is aware, 123 are members of the CLSBA.

The Bar Leaders Institute was held at the Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden on March 10, 2017. ABA Past President Robert Grey was the keynote speaker. There were 80 registrants for this program. Topics for the day included Resources for Bar Associations; Nuts and Bolts of Bar Leadership; Bar Projects Showcase; Ethics for Bar Leaders – Duty to Care; and How Bar Leaders Can Successfully Engage Members of the Bench in Local Bar Events and Functions. We would like to thank the BLI subcommittee that put together a phenomenal program – Chuck Lollar, Marcus Scriven, Lewis Martin and Luis Perez. The fearless foursome is planning the 2018 BLI, which will be held Friday, March 9, 2018, in Richmond.

On September 19, 2016, the CLSBA presented the Solo & Small-Firm Practitioner Forum in Winchester. Topics of the day included Technology, Cybersecurity, Financial & Business Arrangements with Clients, Appellate Practice, and Arbitration. The day offered 5 hours of live CLE, with 4 hours of Ethics. There were 169 registrants for this program.

Similar to previous programs, the CLSBA hosted the Solo & Small-Firm Practitioner Forum/Bench-Bar Conference and Town Hall Meeting in Emporia on October 24, 2016.  Topics of the day included Technology, Cybersecurity, What to Do/Not Do in the Courtroom, Evidentiary Issues Across the Border; and GAL/Children. The Town Hall Meeting included Judge Marla Decker of the Virginia Court of Appeals and Judge Robert N. Hunter Jr. of the North Carolina Court of Appeals. Many thanks to the VSB Bench-Bar Relations Committee for their planning of the Bench-Bar portion of the program.  The day offered 5.5 hours of live CLE, with 3 hours of Ethics. There were 147 registrants for this event.

On April 10, 2017, the CLSBA presented a Solo & Small-Firm Practitioner Forum at the Holiday Inn in Downtown Lynchburg. The program was similar to the Winchester event except there were no appellate or technology sessions. The Diversity Conference participated in this event and presented on the changing realities and considerations in the practice of law in the Commonwealth of Virginia. The day offered 5 hours of live CLE, with 3 hours of Ethics. There were 233 registrants for this event.

This year’s CLSBA Annual Meeting and Breakfast took place on Friday, June 16, at 7:30 a.m. at the Sheraton Virginia Beach Oceanfront Hotel. As always, we had a great turnout. The Local Bar Leader of the Year Award recipient was Heather Scott Miller from Leesburg. The winner of this year’s Bar Association of the Year Award was the Charlottesville-Albemarle Bar Association. A new award was created this year to recognize a Specialty Bar Leader of the Year. This award went to Andrew J. Reinhardt from Richmond. There were six Awards of Merit, one for a multi-bar project, and one Certificate of Achievement presented this year. The CLSBA nominating committee report was read and approved unanimously. The members voted to update the CLSBA Bylaws and Constitution to include a name change to “Conference of Local and Specialty Bar Associations,” provide for email notifications in the future, update the title of the staff liaison, and require advance approval of future bylaws changes by VSB Executive Committee and Council to bring the CLSBA in line with other VSB conferences.

The So You’re 18 handbook has been distributed to schools, J&DR Courts, departments of social services, juvenile detention centers, and other groups/organizations as requested. The CLSBA Executive Committee is currently working on updates for the coming year.

The CLSBA continually seeks to improve its efforts to better serve the needs of Virginia's local, statewide and specialty bar associations, to identify best practices and inform bar leaders of developments and trends on issues of importance to association leadership.

We look forward to another successful year under the guidance of the new chair, B. Alan McGraw of Tazewell.

Updated: Jul 26, 2017