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President's Column

David F. Maron

Article by David F. Maron 2012-2013 CABA President

Email: dmaron@bakerdonelson.com
Posted

It has been an eventful summer. With the U.S. Supreme Court Affordable Care Act and immigration opinions, the London Olympics, and the national election cycle ramping up, a lot is going on. CABA has been busy as well. With its continued emphasis on communication among membership, civility and professionalism, and promoting public service, there are several exciting developments and opportunities.

First, thanks to CABA board member Scott Jones and Communications Committee co-chairs, Meta Copeland and Melissa Baltz, CABA has launched its new website. The new website provides a more flexible and user-friendly platform to get information to and from you, our members. In fact, many of you may have already downloaded this article from our new website or even on your smart phone.

We’ve also launched a CABA Facebook Page and a CABA Twitter Account to allow even greater access to information. Those are new. Please take a moment to “like” us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter for information, articles, and announcements for socials, meetings and other CABA activities.

CABA members will also continue to receive announcements and information by email. But now, similar to the weekly News from the Mississippi Bar email, CABA’s email will be sent from info@caba.ms. So, to make sure you stay up to date, please check to make sure your email filter settings recognize and allow these emails.

Second, CABA is continuing its emphasis to promote civility and professionalism within the practice of law. Strengthening relationships (and building new ones) is often best accomplished out of the office, so mark your calendars and plan to participate in CABA’s Tennis Tournament (proceeds from which benefit MVLP) and attend the Fall Social, both of which will be held at River Hills Club on October 4. For more information contact Tennis Chair Stephanie Jones and Social Chair Joanna Kuhn.

Mentoring also remains a core element of CABA’s support of professionalism. Thanks to each CABA member who took part in the recent Mississippi Bar James O. Dukes Professionalism programs at Ole Miss and MC law schools. It is a critical investment in the future of our profession and, most importantly, in the lives of new law students who will be a part of that future. Beginning a mentoring dialogue early helps build a solid foundation for high standards of professional service and conduct toward clients and fellow lawyers.

In order to foster a continuous and formal dialogue with law students, CABA has created a non-voting Law Student Representative on the CABA board. The position will create opportunities for direct communication between a law student representative and CABA leadership. CABA’s first Law Student Representative for 2012-13 is Wesley Webb, a 3L at Mississippi College School of Law. We look forward to increased communication that will allow CABA to expand its mentoring and working relationships with law students. If you have ideas and an interest in participating in this initiative please let us know.

Finally, please mark your calendar and plan to attend a one-hour ethics CLE starting at 11:30 at the Capital Club on August 21st. The CLE is offered free to CABA members and is entitled Your Brother’s Keeper. Our speakers, Chip Glaze and Adam Kilgore (respectively, the Director of Lawyers and Judge Assistance Program and General Counsel of the Mississippi Bar) will address professional responsibility and personal impairment issues. Awareness and intervention both help to avoid or mitigate the effects of malpractice claims, suspension of a law partner, or the loss of a friend or colleague. Warning signs tragically are more frequently noticed after the fact. But if we’re alert and know what to look for, we might not only avoid loss of productivity or preserve a reputation, but we may also save a life.

Third, as always there are many opportunities to stay involved. Whether you’re interested in public service, pro bono or in other CABA committees, take a look at the list of CABA committees on CABA’s new interactive Committee Page. On this new committee page, each committee is listed along with a description of its mission. CABA committee leaders have been making plans for the 2012-13 year. If you’re not already a committee member (or aren’t sure) let me encourage you to email a committee chair and start today. Photos and contact information for each committee leader are also provided on the committee page to help members keep in touch with committee leaders.

In closing, this fall will mark the 50th anniversary of the historic admission of James Meredith to the University of Mississippi. It was and remains a pivotal event in history. We’re grateful that two CABA members have shared personal reflections in this issue of the Newsletter. The articles by John Corlew (p 17) and former Mississippi Supreme Court Justice James Robertson (p 19) offer two unique and valuable perspectives on the events surrounding those years.

James Meredith’s admission to school is a history of courage—his as well as judges,1 lawyers and others involved. Another well-documented account of this history is contained in Unlikely Heroes by Jack Bass.

As we mark this anniversary, it is a history to reflect on. In his foreword to Erle Johnson’s Mississippi’s Defiant Years, Governor William Winter summarized it well: This history “is a sometimes depressing often disturbing, but factual account of an era that thankfully has been laid to rest, but should not be forgotten. For it is only by remembering what has gone before that we are able to understand and appreciate where and who we are.”


  1. See e.g., James H. Meredith v. Charles Dickson Fair, President of the Board of Trustees, 298 F. 2d 696 (5th Cir. 1962).