Ten Years Later: Associations Reflect on Support After the Storm

Ten years ago, attorneys, judges and law students in New Orleans and other Gulf Coast communities had far more on their minds than their next meeting or hearing–many were wondering if they would even have a home or office to return to following the damage of Hurricane Katrina.

Much like how members of bar associations join together to help their colleagues in need, the national bar association community, including the Indianapolis Bar Association, pooled support and resources to assist both the Mississippi Bar Association and the New Orleans Bar Association after this historic disaster. Ten years later, Executive Directors from both organizations reminisced on the experience and expressed their gratitude to fellow bar associations.

Helena Henderson, Executive Director of the New Orleans Bar Association:

Shortly after Hurricane Katrina, the New Orleans Bar Association faced tremendous uncertainty about the future of our city. 100% of the lawyers in metropolitan New Orleans were impacted and 80% of the City was under water. You know the story – many of you have experienced your own disasters.

With the unwavering support of brave hearts across the country, we were able to accomplish our goal of demonstrating the viability of New Orleans and preserving the rule of law during this period. The fleur de lis was always the symbol of New Orleans and became a meaningful symbol of hope and recovery for all New Orleanians. For NOBA, the three plumes of the fleur de lis represent faith, honor and justice, three qualities it took to remain steadfastly beside us.

Larry Houchins, Executive Director of the Mississippi Bar Association:

On behalf of The Mississippi Bar, Bar Foundation and the lawyers of Mississippi, especially those on our gulf coast, I say thank you to all of you for your love, prayers, donations and support. The scars remain on our gulf coast, but it has been amazing to witness the resilience and fortitude of our gulf coast. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

We are forever grateful.

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On Tap: August 31 – September 6

Everybody loves a local bar, so check out what yours is serving up this week with upcoming IndyBar events and happenings below!

On the Docket

The Current Climate Regarding Police Use of Force
Thursday, September 3 from noon to 1 p.m.
IndyBar Education Center
Information and registration can be found here.
Part of the Use of Force CLE Series – check out more details here!

Check out the full slate of IndyBar events here, and don’t forget to check out the IndyBar on Facebook for the latest event photos.

News You Can Use

  • Scholarship Available to Health Law Conference - The Indianapolis Bar Association Health Care & Life Sciences Section is pleased to announce it is offering scholarships for the American Health Lawyers Association Fundamentals of Health Law Conference, November 15-17, 2015, in Chicago. Learn more here.
  • You’re Invited: Reach for Youth “Don’t Judge Me” Happy Hour - Reach for Youth, the 2012 Impact Fund Grant recipient and local non-profit, is inviting licensed attorneys to learn more about the Teen Court program and how to get involved. Click here for information about the event.
  • IndyBar Member Headlines: Thursday, August 27 – Get all the latest member news in one place here!
  • When a Barking Dog is a Good Thing: Some Tips for Success for Young Lawyers – IndyBar President John C. Trimble talks about nine ways young lawyers can stay ahead of the curve in their careers. Check out his advice here.
  • 2012 IBF Grantee Continues Good Work – Reach for Youth continues to improve the lives of local teens through their Teen Court program. Catch up with the 2012 IBF Impact Fund grant winner in this article.
  • Getting Along is Not Wrong - The latest Getting Along is Not Wrong entry shows that civility toward a young lawyer can leave a lasting impression. Check out Sam Laurin’s experience here.
  • The Glass is Half Full at the IndyBar! – There’s still time to join the IndyBar for HALF PRICE. Included with this half price dues offer is six months FREE on Indy Lawyer Finder (a $900 value!).  Check out the details.
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miniBar Talk: This Week’s Top Post

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Progress Report: Millennial Lawyer Survey Results

By Jenai M. Brackett, Frost Brown Todd LLC

Do you understand the business aspects of practicing law? Are you potentially sabotaging your career by not recording all your billable time? Are you demonstrating your commitment to the financial success of your firm and driving your own career? Are you providing value to senior lawyers, just as those lawyers provide value to external clients?

See what a survey of 880 millennial lawyers revealed and compare it to the perspectives of law firm Professional Development professionals in this article: Swimming Lessons for Baby Sharks: Ms. JD Millennial Lawyer Survey Results.

This post was written by Jenai M. Brackett of Frost Brown Todd LLC. If you would like to submit content or write an article for the Young Lawyers Division page, please email Rachel Beachy at

To subscribe to more young lawyers news like the article above, click here to update your news subscriptions. Your news subscriptions appear in your bi-weekly E-Bulletin and on your personalized IndyBar homepage.

Keep an eye out for our newest e-newsletter for members, Bar Talk, featuring the top IndyBar posts each month!

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2012 IBF Grantee Continues Good Work

By Carolyn Clay Hall, Bingham Greenebaum Doll LLP

Some kids shoplift. Some get caught.

According to the National Association for Shoplifting Prevention (NASP), roughly 2 million kids were caught shoplifting in the past five years.

Roger was one of them.

Roger is not his real name, but his story is all too real and all too common.

At 17, on the cusp of being tried as an adult, Roger was given a choice: become another criminal statistic and likely, according to NASP statistics, a repeat offender, or take a different approach: be tried by a jury, truly of his peers.

This is Teen Court, a program offered by Reach for Youth, a local nonprofit with more than 40 years of experience helping kids like Roger find a better way.

Teen Court was also the Indianapolis Bar Foundation’s 2012 Impact Fund Grant recipient.

Each year, Teen Court reaches out to more than 600 youth and their families through multiple intervention and diversion programs, including an in-school Teen Court model in which teens are trained by local attorneys to learn how to be prosecuting and defense attorneys for their peers. In 2012, Reach for Youth was able to grow this model with the help of the IBF’s Impact Fund Grant.

During Teen Court sessions, students present the facts of the case to a jury of fellow students as well as the participating adults, including a volunteer attorney, who serves as a judge.

In exchange for clearing the shoplifting charge from his criminal record, Roger agreed to participate in Reach for Youth’s Teen Court program, but his peers didn’t let him off easy: His sentence included eight hours of community service, a shoplifting workshop, a written apology to the store from which he shoplifted, a verbal, in-court apology to his family, and two nights serving jury duty on the same Teen Court that convicted him.

Not only did Roger successfully compete his sentence, he stayed on for extra credit: he became a Teen Court volunteer, helping to decide sentences for similar teens in danger of becoming just another crime statistic.

According to Reach for Youth, Teen Court has proven to be a successful tool in crime prevention efforts, maintaining a lower recidivism rate than those offenders who are charged and sentenced through the traditional juvenile justice system. Teen Court also provides a leadership opportunity for youth interested in law and government.

With the Teen Court in-school program, teachers have reported decreased classroom interruptions and improved behavior and grades.

Roger is an example of the success of Teen Court, and Teen Court is an example of the success of the IBF’s Impact Fund Grant. If you are interested in volunteering for Teen Court, please email

Don’t miss this upcoming event for attorneys interested in getting involved with Teen Court: “Don’t Judge Me”! RSVP today and learn more about you can get involved here.

Posted in Indianapolis Bar Foundation, Volunteer/Pro Bono Opportunity | Leave a comment

CLE Series to Tackle Legal Issues Surrounding Use of Force

A hot topic in the news can be more than just a headline—it can become an issue that hits close to home. Throughout the past months, the debate on police use of force has intensified. But how does this national issue relate to the practice of Indy lawyers?

An upcoming IndyBar CLE series will examine this topic through a local lens and will feature four programs that will expand the issue of police officers’ use of force, addressing current topics affecting police departments and the lawyers who advise them. Hosted by the bar’s Government Practice Section, the series will feature thought-provoking insight from leaders on both sides of the debate as well as practical information on substantive law issues.

The series will kick off on September 3 with a panel discussion on the current climate regarding police use of force, featuring five excellent and entertaining speakers: Beth Garrison, City of Kokomo; John Kautzman, Ruckelshaus Kautzman Bemis Blackwell & Hasbrook; Rich Waples, Waples & Hanger; Steve Creason, Indiana Attorney General’s Office; and Chief Darryl Pierce, former Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department assistant chief. This panel discussion will provide a broad spectrum of ideas and viewpoints on police use of force and other interactions with the public.

The second CLE on Sept. 17 looks at civil implications and liability regarding officer use of force. At this second presentation, attendees will hear two seasoned practitioners, Libby Roberts of Church Church Hittle & Antrim and Patricia Orloff Erdmann of the Indiana Attorney General’s Office, discuss police liability arising from officer use of force and their experiences in defending these claims.

At the third session on Oct. 1 speakers will delve into possible criminal or other repercussions arising from police misconduct—including when an officer’s use of force crosses the line and becomes excessive. This third presentation will answer questions about whether and/or in what circumstances police officers can be criminally charged for incidents arising in their line of work.

The series culminates Oct. 15 with a one-on-one debate concerning a number of issues with the current climate regarding police use of force. This debate CLE is the Government Practice Section’s third annual debate, each of which has showcased a hotly debated media topic. This debate also showcases the best of legal professionalism, displaying that two accomplished legal professionals can fundamentally disagree on a topic while remaining collegial and professional in their disagreement.

Each and every one of these CLEs is an excellent opportunity to learn about the changing landscape of police officer use of force and how it may affect clients, to hear experts discuss and debate police use of force in today’s climate, and to meet and network with experienced practitioners who work in the same or similar area of law.

If you want your practice to stay relevant in today’s changing culture, you don’t want to miss this engaging and enlightening series. Register for it today here.

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IndyBar Member Headlines: Thursday, August 27

Share your news with the IndyBar by contacting Rachel Beachy, Communications Coordinator, at

James Dimos, member of Frost Brown Todd LLC and past president of the IndyBar, has been hired as deputy executive director of the American Bar Association.

Glenda Russell has been appointed chief operating officer at Robert Swaney Consulting Inc.

Megan Mulford, partner at Bose McKinney & Evans LLP, was elected to serve on the DePauw University Board of Visitors.

Edward D. Thomas, of Lewis Wagner LLP has been appointed by Gov. Mike Pence to the Business Law Survey Commission.

B. Ronan Johnson, Taft Stettinius & Hollister LLP, has been selected as a member of Leadership Indianapolis’s inaugural President’s Council.

Edna Wallace, Whitham Hebenstreit & Zubek LLP, received the 2015 Indiana Paralegal Association Inc. Paralegal of the Year award.

Tonya Brock, Cohen & Malad LLP, received the 2015 Indiana Paralegal Association Inc. Outstanding Board Member of the Year Award.

The following appointments were made to Indiana Paralegal Association Inc.: Arlene Morris, Whitham Hebenstreit & Zubek LLP, has been elected vice president; and Cathy Canny, Benesch Friedlander Coplan & Aronoff LLP, has been elected treasurer. The following have been elected as directors for the Indiana Paralegal Association Inc.: Monica Dabio, Benesch Friedlander Coplan & Aronoff LLP, as continuing legal education director; Tonya Brock, Cohen & Malad LLP, as fundraising director; Julie Johnson, Bose McKinney & Evans LLP, as job bank director; Laura E. A. Thirion, Hoover Hull Turner LLP, as marketing and public relations director; Sherry Bailey, Frost Brown Todd LLC, as membership director; Rhonda Murphy, Bose McKinney & Evans LLP, as monthly meeting director; Lottie Wathen, Whitham Hebenstreit & Zubek LLP, as newsletter director; Linda McGirr, Barnes & Thornburg LLP, as NFPA primary representative; Nichole Miller, Mallor Grodner LLP, as parliamentarian; and Jennifer Ebersold, Norris Choplin Schroeder LLP, as technology director.

Nicholas C. Huang has joined Harrison & Moberly LLP as a partner.

Edward L. Holloran III has joined Quarles & Brady LLP as a partner in its health law practice group.

Paul R. Steffes has been named partner at Krieg DeVault LLP. He practices in the firm’s intellectual property and technology practice group.

Frederick D. Emhardt, partner at Plews Shadley Racher & Braun LLP, is now a registered civil mediator in Indiana.

R. William Gardner has joined Taft Stettinius & Hollister LLP as an associate in the Environmental group.

Keith Hancock is now an associate at Campbell Kyle Proffitt LLP.

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Getting Along is Not Wrong

Getting Along Logo v1Civility. Courtesy. Respect. Professionalism.

These are words that should be synonymous with “Advocate” but in a world of high stakes, strong opinions, and a general, societal decline in basic manners, how can attorneys fight the good fight while living up to these ideals – especially if the other side doesn’t? We set out to find examples of lawyers who model the way while providing excellent representation.

Getting Along is Not Wrong, an initiative of the IndyBar Standing Committee on Professionalism, is the impressive collection of such positive and compelling behavior.

Sam Laurin, Bose McKinney & Evans LLP

When I was a young lawyer, I represented a client in a multi-party dispute. Everyone else involved was more seasoned than I was.  There was a meeting with all of the lawyers and we discussed the parameters of a possible resolution. That led to further discussions and telephone conferences, some of which did not involve me. However, at all times I was under the impression that settlement negotiations were still ongoing as neither I, nor my client, had agreed to settle.

Nonetheless, one of the lawyers involved in the negotiations informed all the parties that a settlement had been reached and that the terms had been approved by me and my client. I then got a call from Chris Baker, currently with Tucker Hester Baker & Krebs, who I had first met in this negotiation.

While the settlement that the other lawyer claimed had been reached would have benefited Chris’ client as well, he called me and said words to the effect of, “I am told that you agreed to these terms and based on what you said I have my doubts that you agreed to this.” I told him my client and I had not agreed to the terms and were stunned that it was being represented that we had. Chris said he understood and then took the lead in getting a resolution that was truly agreed upon by everyone. I have never forgotten Chris’ kindness as he had no obligation to protect the young lawyer, yet he did anyway.

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When a Barking Dog is a Good Thing: Some Tips for Success for Young Lawyers

IBA-trimble-john-2015In my meetings and travels as Indy Bar President, I frequently find myself in one of two conversations.

The first is a conversation among Baby Boomer lawyers who are expressing concern or frustration about the things that young lawyers don’t seem to know these days.

The second is a conversation among Millennial lawyers expressing concern or frustration about what we Baby Boomers don’t seem to know about younger lawyers.

At the heart of all of this discussion is the desire by each generation for our newer lawyers to find success and fulfillment in our profession.

There is no shortage of sources for lawyers of all ages to receive tips on how to succeed. The tips that follow in this article are just a few that have been passed along to me by my mentors through the years. To my many young lawyer friends, I hope that they will be helpful.

1. Clients do not hire us, and we did not go to law school to bill in increments of a tenth of an hour. We were trained and we are hired to be problem solvers. If you adopt the heart of a problem solver in everything you do in the law, your clients will be better served, our profession will be better served, and you will be more successful. You can “churn” and earn or you can “turn” and earn. The best in our business turn and earn.

2. The best lawyers in our business are lifelong relationship builders. If you want to have business of your own, then you need to establish and nurture relationships everywhere you can find them. That means that you have to be out and about and doing more than billing hours.

3. Be responsive. In panel after panel of clients and general counsel at bar meetings, the number one reason cited for pulling business is that the lawyer is not responsive. If you are unresponsive to your friends, your colleagues, other lawyers, and your clients, you will slowly lose any hope of growing a business. There is no exception to this rule.

4. Mind your reputation. It takes a long time to build a reputation, but it can be lost in an instant. Many writers have said that a good reputation is a lawyer’s most prized possession. Remember, however, that reputation is more than just your integrity; it also includes your responsiveness, your demeanor, your legal ability, your attention to detail and more—including your social media postings.

5. Be thoughtful in how you communicate. Younger lawyers prefer email, instant messaging, and text messaging. Older lawyers prefer the telephone and face to face. A fair mixture of both is a good idea. If you are going to build relationships, then personal interaction with others needs to be part of it. Further, you may actually get more done if you take the time to pick up the phone and talk to other lawyers now and then (particularly to us Baby Boomers).

6. Always, always, always be on time. Clients and judges hate lawyers who are late. I encourage you to use the military definition of on time that my father taught me: “Early is on time; on time is late; and late doesn’t happen.” If you are going to be late, call or text someone to let them know.

7. If you meet me at an event somewhere or even on the street, be sure to tell me your first and last names. I go to meetings all the time where I meet individuals whose nametag tells me they are Mike or Jane or Robert or Debbie, but with no last name. If you want me to remember you and find you later so that I can make a referral or an appointment to a committee, I need to be able to find you.

8. Stay current on news. There is a lot going on around us every day that is important for you to know in order to keep and improve relationships with clients and other lawyers. If you do not have a means to learn when someone has received an award or promotion or when someone has lost a loved one, then you may miss an opportunity to send congratulations or sympathies. Little things mean a lot.

9. Get started in a bar association you like at a young age and be a persistent participant throughout your career. Every successful lawyer I know is involved in a bar association of some kind. The opportunities to build relationships, build reputation, and learn news of the legal community are all part of bar membership and active participation.

So, the last word on this subject is a simple statement that I heard years ago from a friend: “Dogs don’t bark at parked cars!” Get out there and move around, meet people, stay current, enjoy our profession. Get the dogs barking. Give yourself the opportunities for success.


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Scholarship Available to Health Law Conference

The Indianapolis Bar Association Health Care & Life Sciences Section is pleased to announce it is offering scholarships for the American Health Lawyers Association Fundamentals of Health Law Conference, November 15-17, 2015, in Chicago.

The scholarship includes registration fee, membership in the AHLA and $300 toward travel and lodging expenses (approximately $1250 value).  The scholarship is aimed at lawyers who have practiced 5 years or less, with a preference toward solo practitioners, government lawyers and those in academia.

Interested parties are encouraged to complete the application, which can be found at, and submit a resume to no later than September 30, 2015.  Winner(s) will be announced by October 15, 2015. To learn more about the conference and the American Health Lawyers Association, visit

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You’re Invited: Reach for Youth “Don’t Judge Me” Happy Hour

Reach for Youth, the 2012 Impact Fund Grant recipient and local non-profit, is inviting licensed attorneys to learn more about the Teen Court program and how to get involved.

“Don’t Judge Me” will be held Thursday, September 24 from 5 to 7 p.m. at The Pub Indianapolis, 30 E. Georgia Street to benefit the Teen Court program that gives troubled young Hoosiers a second chance.  For $12, attorneys can meet with current Teen Court judges and learn how to become one. You will also be given complimentary food, drinks, t-shirt and monocle if you RSVP by September 6. Click here for more information.

To see the Facebook page for the event, click here. To RSVP, click here.


Posted in Indianapolis Bar Foundation, Upcoming Events | Leave a comment