President's Column

President’s Column: Making Meaningful Connections Through Service

Kaytie Pickett

Article by Kaytie Pickett 2022-2023 CABA President


Membership and support of CABA gives two great benefits: the opportunity to serve, and the opportunity to connect. Those benefits are intertwined. It is through service to others that we form our deepest and best connections.

This may seem intuitive, but it wasn’t always obvious to me. When my child was small, my husband and I took him to a psychiatrist because we were anxious that he was suffering from anxiety. The psychiatrist’s advice stuck with me. She had him pass out stickers to cheer people up. She explained that when an anxious person helps others, their anxiety decreases.

As those who know me well know, my child came by his anxiety naturally–I also struggle with anxiety, particularly around social events. My failed coping mechanism has always been to avoid people and work more. But a long time ago, a friend pushed me to join JYL, which in turn led to my involvement with the State Bar and with CABA. I found my committee work with CABA enjoyable and meaningful, particularly serving as the co-chair of the Women’s Initiative with Secretary-Treasurer Keishunna Webster. I value the opportunities I’ve had to give back to our community and our profession, and in the process, to connect with the fine judges and lawyers who practice in our capital area.

You may be a natural social butterfly or, like me, an anxious slug. Either way, I encourage you to emerge from your COVID-cocoon and get involved in all that CABA has to offer. Our membership meetings and social events are a great chance to visit with new and old friends, but our committees and pro bono events are where our real service takes place. Please consider joining a committee, which you can do online at

I am amazed and humbled that someone like me has the honor of serving as your President. I’m grateful to Clarence Webster for his fine leadership this past year as President and to all of our Board and Officers: Margaret Cupples, Vice President and President-Elect; Keishunna Webster, Secretary-Treasurer; and Directors Missye Scott, Graham Carner, Lili Evans Bass, and Jason Fortenberry. And CABA would come to a screeching halt were it not for our excellent Executive Director, Jane Harkins.

This year, let’s commit to giving back to our community and spending time with each other. In the words of E.M. Forester, “Only connect! …Live in fragments no longer.”