The Education Initiative - An Introduction to the 2008-09 Young Lawyers Section

The Young Lawyers Section seeks to accomplish many goals throughout the course of the year. In fact, our mission statement as outlined in our Bylaws is quite particular:

The Section's mission is to further the Association's goals and purposes, and thereby to serve the community and the legal profession; to represent Members in the Association, and to represent the Association to Members; to help shape policies and priorities that affect members of the legal culture in which they practice; to create a deliberate forum for the exchange and expression of Members' views, and a voice to advocate views; to promote diversity within the Association, the Bar and Connecticut law schools; to perform acts of charitable service to the Bar and the Community; to provide continuing legal education; and to facilitate the participation of Members in the American Bar Association.

In order to accomplish these objectives, appointments for positions as Directors, Substantive Committee Chairs, Local Unit Chairs and Liaisons on the Executive Committee of the Section have been made by the Section's Selection Committee. These enthusiastic individuals have volunteered their time and effort to see that our goals are met. I introduce to you the 2008-09 Young Lawyers Section - Executive Committee:

OFFICERS

CHAIR

PAST CHAIR

Lawrence F. Morizio

Cousins, Desrosiers & Morizio, PC

Daniel J. Krisch

Horton Shields & Knox PC

CHAIR-ELECT

ABA/YLD DISTRICT REPRESENTATIVE

Proloy K. Das

Rome McGuigan, P.C.

Mareesa L. Torres
Law Offices of Andrew S. Turret

TREASURER

ABA DISTRICT DELEGATE

Jeffrey J. White

Robinson & Cole LLP

Dan Schwartz

Pullman & Comley

SECRETARY

Jonathan Weiner

Connecticut Supreme Court

SENIOR DIRECTOR

Jeffrey M. Sklarz

Zeisler & Zeisler

DIRECTORS/SPECIAL COMMITTEE CHAIRS

PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT DIRECTORS

Stacy Smith Walsh

Day Pitney LLP

Jonathan M. Shapiro

Day Pitney LLP

PRO BONO/PUBLIC SERVICE DIRECTORS

Mareesa L. Torres
Law Offices of Andrew S. Turret

Christopher R. Perry

Robinson & Cole LLP

Rich Haskell
Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation

DIVERSITY DIRECTORS

Mychal S. Boyd

Wiggin & Dana LLP

Jessica Torres

Attorney General's Office

PROFESSIONAL NETWORKING DIRECTORS

Sebastian J. Scalora
Giuliano & Scalora, P.C.

EDUCATION INITIATIVE

I. CLE DIRECTORS

Chris R. Nelson

Parrett, Porto, Parese & Colwell, PC

Matthew A. Lucarelli
Tynan & Iannone

II. EQUILIBRIUM

Jennifer A. Black

McCarter & English, LLP

III. PROFESSIONAL ETHICS & RESPONSIBILITY

Todd J. Richardson

Nuzzo & Roberts, LLC

SPECIAL EVENTS ADVISOR

Jessica Torres

Attorney General's Office

LIAISONS & LAW STUDENTS

CONNECTICUT ASIAN PACIFIC AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION LIASON

Amit Patel

Quinnipiac Law - Student

CORPORATE COUNSEL LIAISON

Kershwin Singh

Boehringer-Ingelheim

GEORGE W. CRAWFORD LAW ASSOCIATION LIAISON

Luretha R. McClendon

Attorney & Counselor at Law

HISPANIC BAR ASSOCIATION LIAISON

Cristina Lopez

Shipman & Goodwin

LEGISLATIVE LIAISON

Matt Ritter

Shipman & Goodwin

SOUTH ASIAN BAR ASSOCIATION OF CONNECTICUT LIAISON

Tushar Shah,

Fazzano, Tomasiewicz & Barall

LAW STUDENT ADVISORS

Laura R. Manteghian

Quinnipiac Law - Graduate

Emily Graner

Quinnipiac Law - Graduate

CONNECTICUT LAW SCHOOL LIAISON

Melissa Wong

Connecticut Law - Student

QUINNIPIAC LAW SCHOOL LIAISON

Kevin Casini

Quinnipiac Law - Student

YALE LAW SCHOOL LIAISON

Aaron Zelinsky
Yale Law - Student

LOCAL UNITS

BRIDGEPORT LOCAL UNIT CHAIR

Rachel A. Pencu
Cohen and Wolf, P.C.

HARTFORD LOCAL UNIT CHAIR

Taylor L. Archambault

Robinson & Cole LLP

MIDDLESEX LOCAL UNIT CO-CHAIRS

Matthew J. Corcoran

Attorney and Counselor at Law

NEW HAVEN LOCAL UNIT CHAIR

Joshua D. Hecht

Caplan, Hecht & Mendel, LLC

NEW LONDON LOCAL UNIT CHAIR

Michael S. Bonnano

Geraghty & Bonnano LLC

STAMFORD LOCAL UNIT CHAIR

Kristen I. Miller
Day Pitney LLP

TOLLAND LOCAL UNIT CHAIR

Danielle Omasta

Beck & Eldgergill, P.C.

WATERBURY LOCAL UNIT CHAIR

Matthew A. Lucarelli
Tynan & Iannone

SUBSTANTIVE COMMITTEES

APPELLATE PRACTICE COMMITTEE

John C. Pitblado
Jorden Burt, LLP

Matt Weiner

McCarter & English LLP

BANKRUPTCY & COMMERCIAL LAW COMMITTEE

Douglas R. Van Valkenburg

Day Pitney LLP

Chris R. Nelson

Parrett, Porto, Parese & Colwell, PC

BUSINESS LAW COMMITTEE

Richard Gora

Finn Dixon & Herling LLP

Justin L. Murphy

Kahan, Kerensky & Capossela LLP

Joshua Berger

Blyth, Inc.

CONSTRUCTION LAW COMMITTEE

Kirkandre (Kirk) D. Durrant

McCarter & English LLP

Derek Werner

Murtha Cullina LLP

CRIMINAL LAW COMMITTEE

David V. DeRosa

Attorney & Counselor at Law

Benjamin D. Gettinger

Lynch, Traub, Keefe & Errante

EDUCATION LAW COMMITTEE

Ashley E. Baron

Siegel, O'Connor, O'Donnell & Beck, P.C.

Melanie M. Brookes

Berchem, Moses & Devlin, P.C.

ESTATE/PROBATE/TAX COMMITTEE

Andrew S. Knott

Knott & Knott, LLC

Joanne Rapuano

Dreier LLP

ENVIRONMENTAL LAW COMMITTEE

Thomas C. Blatchley

Halloran & Sage LLP

Loni S. Gardner

Murtha Cullina LLP

FAMILY LAW COMMITTEE

Brette H. Logan

Louden Legal Group, LLC

Pamela M. Magnano

O'Connell Flaherty & Attmore LLC

FEDERAL PRACTICE COMMITTEE

Kellianne Baranowsky

Zeisler & Zeisler, P.C.

Peter Murphy

Shipman & Goodwin

GOVERNMENT COMMITTEE

Greg Daniels

Freedom of Information Commission

Ed Wilson

Attorney General's Office

HEALTH LAW COMMITTEE

Adam T. Boston

Robinson & Cole LLP

Brian D. Nichols

Robinson & Cole LLP

INSURANCE LAW COMMITTEE

Jennifer S. Janik

Noble, Spector & O'Connor, P.C.

Kim P. Bush
Tyler Cooper

INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY LAW COMMITTEE

Cecilia Zhang Stiber

Day Pitney LLP

Bryan Watson

Wiggin & Dana LLP

LABOR & EMPLOYMENT LAW COMMITTEE

Christine Collyer

Pullman & Comley, LLC

Rita B. Trivedi

Robinson & Cole LLP

LAND USE & REAL PROPERTY

Mary Catherine (Catie) Curran

Shipman, Sosensky, Randich & Marks, LLC

Mychal S. Boyd

Wiggin & Dana LLP

Mario Coppola

Berchem, Moses & Devlin, P.C.

LESBIAN AND GAY RIGHTS COMMITTEE

Julia K. Lentini

Staff Attorney

Contract Administration Unit

Department of Social Services

LITIGATION COMMITTEE

Michael P. Burdo

Berchem, Moses & Devlin, P.C.

Danielle Omasta

Beck & Eldgergill, P.C.

Colin P. Mahon

Weigand, Mahon & Adelman, P.C.

PUBLIC INTEREST LAW COMMITTEE

Robert Ricketts

Staff Attorney

Department of Social Services

Cecil J. Thomas

Greater Hartford Legal Aid, Inc.

SOLO/SMALL FIRM/GENERAL PRACTICE

Daniel C. Ford

Attorney & Counselor at Law

Craig Abbott

Murphy & Karpie, LLC

WOMEN IN THE LAW COMMITTEE

Stacy Smith Walsh

Day Pitney LLP

Janée Woods Weber

Pullman & Comley, LLC

WORKERS' COMPENSATION COMMITTEE

Eric P. Santoro

The Law Office of Eric P. Santoro, LLC

Maribeth McGloin

Maher & Williams

This is an incredibly diverse group with attorneys participating from firms throughout the state. There is also an eclectic mix of attorneys from the private and public sectors, ranging from solo practice to large firm. The Section has expanded this year with the initiation of the Middlesex Local Unit, Education Law Committee, Lesbian and Gay Rights Committee, and the Corporate Counsel Liaison position. In addition, the Land Use & Real Property Committee and the Environmental Law Committee have been separated based on interest for the subject matter.

The Executive Committee has already been hard at work organizing programs for their respective constituencies at the annual Retreat, which took place in Mystic, Connecticut in June of 2008. We were honored to hear from guest speaker, Connecticut Supreme Court Justice Peter Zarella. Justice Zarella focused on the importance of an independent judiciary and followed with a question and answer session for the attendees. We were also honored to have incoming Chair of the Connecticut Bar Association, Attorney Livia Barndollar, and Past Chair, Attorney Lou Pepe, speak to the group during our lunch session. In addition, Executive Committee members were responsible for donating significant supplies (filling dozens of boxes) for a troop drive in support of fellow member, Jeffrey LaPierre, a Public Defender in Bridgeport, currently serving in the military overseas.

Each year, it is customary for the Chair to focus on one theme and advance it through programming efforts. As far as this year is concerned, the Section is concentrating on the Education Initiative. In simple terms, we are looking to keep lawyers educated on several levels in order to heighten the level of quality in our profession. Our goal is three-fold: 1) educate lawyers by providing Continuing Legal Education seminars; 2) provide lawyers the opportunity to balance their work and life; 3) refresh lawyers with the importance of civility and conduct through professional ethics and responsibility training.

It is our goal for each of our substantive committees to organize and hold at least one Continuing Legal Education seminar. Keeping apprised of the substantive law of your area of practice seems like a simple task. However, with the rigors of practice always increasing, the importance of understanding the nuances of procedural and substantive law are paramount. The Young Lawyers Section has been a steady contributor to the Bar Association in this regard with the installation of the Basic Practice Series. This year, you should be able to look up the Section or Committee you are a part of, whether a young or experienced lawyer, and attend a seminar to advance your knowledge of a particular subject matter.

In addition, workshops will be held to advance the Equilibrium Project (the importance of balancing your job with daily life) and the third prong of the Education Initiative, Professional Ethics and Responsibility. Equilibrium has been a mainstay of the Young Lawyers for several years. Young lawyers throughout the state have benefited from the expertise of chefs, financial planners, fitness trainers and the like to balance the harshness of practice with certain necessaries to improve quality of life. Taking a deep breath is imperative for healthy living and we plan to instill these values to our Section through our balance and life programs. The Professional Ethics and Responsibility Section, a new creation, will allow us to remind our Section members of the importance of adhering to the principles of professionalism and the Model Rules. I noticed in a recent glance of the Connecticut Opinions section of the Connecticut Law Tribune that the Statewide Grievance Committee has not been shy about pursuing claims against attorneys of all practice areas. It is our goal to keep young lawyers informed and aware of potential pitfalls and how to avoid them.

I want to thank in advance the Officers, Directors, Liaisons and Substantive and Local Unit Chairs referenced above for their efforts to set out and accomplish the stated mission this year. While educating attorneys will be a major focus of the Section, we cannot forget the importance of public service, pro bono efforts, diversity awareness, and networking, all of which will make us not only better lawyers, but better people. The Section will keep you updated with respect to programming of all variety. Please feel free to contact me directly or the individuals listed above should you have comments or suggestions for future programming or wish to participate in a particular area of the Section this year.