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Getting Along is Not Wrong: Disagreement without Attack

Civility. 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. Check out the entry below and continue checking back for future installments.

Laura E. Gorman, Barnes & Thornburg LLP –

One of the well-respected attorneys in our community that served as a mentor to me early on in my legal career was Jim Crum of Coots Henke & Wheeler PC. As an attorney who handles both criminal and civil matters, Jim is often before the court advocating on behalf of his clients. In doing so, I observed that although our profession is an adversarial profession, Jim was always able to zealously represent his clients without being uncivil to opposing parties. He maintained positive courtroom demeanor and was always prepared to respectfully argue the factual and legal issues before the court, thereby demonstrating further respect to the court. Jim could disagree with a party’s position or a court’s ruling without attacking such opinions or resorting to personal attacks. Jim is able to recognize what others in our legal community so often forget – incivility has a price and often only harms the client.

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IndyBar Frontlines: October 14

TED Talk Fan? Help bring them to the IndyBar!
We’re organizing a series of small group discussions centered around the popular TED Talk programs. Would you like to be part of selecting the topics? We’ll be viewing the talks followed by small group discussions while sampling local craft beer or wine.  If you’re interested, contact Julie Armstrong at jarmstrong@indybar.org.

Government Practice Section Awards Scholarship to Carrie Brennan
The IndyBar’s Government Practice Section awarded its third annual scholarship to Carrie Brennan of the Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law.

As attorneys who represent government agencies, or who assist clients in matters involving government agencies, the members of the Government Practice Section award the $1,000 scholarship to a second- or third-year law student with a strong academic record and a demonstrated interest in government practice.

This year, the Section’s Executive Committee reviewed applications from talented students attending each of Indiana’s law schools. The Section commends Ms. Brennan for standing out among a group of intelligent, motivated, and service-minded applicants.

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Abrams: Professionalism and Civility

By Jeffrey A. Abrams, Benesch Friedlander Coplan & Aronoff LLP

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This past week made two marks on my personal challenge to promote and encourage professionalism and civility. On Tuesday, the IndyBar honored Justice Brent Dickson and Philip “Skip” Kappes with the Silver Gavel Award and 2014 Professionalism Award. These two individuals demonstrate the epitome of class, civility and professionalism in our world. Justice Dickson had a remarkable career in Lafayette prior to ascending to the Supreme Court. He led our Supreme Court for several years with distinction. Skip Kappes, at the young age of 92, still provides leadership and counsel to the young attorneys at Lewis & Kappes while being known as one of the best and kindest attorneys in our community.

Our Professionalism Committee, chaired by Tricia McMath, did a superlative job in recognizing these two individuals for service to our community and to our profession. If you see Tricia or any of her committee members (listed below), please thank them for their tireless efforts in promoting professionalism and civility in our community in recognizing these two pioneers of remarkable vintage.

2014 IndyBar Standing Committee on Professionalism

Chair:

Patricia Caress McMath, Marion County Public Defender Agency

Committee Members:

Kellie M. Barr, U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana

Marie D. Castetter, Foley & Abbott

Justice Steven H. David, Indiana Supreme Court

Erin M. Durnell, Broyles Kight & Ricafort PC

Courtney S. Figg, Eads Murray &Pugh PC

Laura E. Gorman, Barnes & Thornburg LLP

Hon. Clayton A. Graham, Marion Superior Court

Susanne A. Heckler, U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana

Daniel W. Kiehl, Law Office of Deborah M. Agard

Amanda J. Miller, Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law

MaryAnn Totino Mindrum, U.S. Attorney’s Office

Kevin A. Morrissey, Lewis & Kappes PC

Magistrate Victoria M. Ransberger, Marion Superior Court

Charles P. Schmal, Woodard Emhardt Moriarty McNett & Henry LLP

Fenton D. Strickland, Indiana Supreme Court

James H. Voyles Jr., Voyles Zahn & Paul

Hon. Heather A. Welch, Marion Superior Court

Brian K. Zoeller, Cohen & Malad LLP

Beginning Friday night and continuing until sundown on Saturday, I spent time in our Temple at Yom Kippur Services where we repented for transgressions against God as well transgressions against each other. I spent several hours contemplating how I can personally continue to improve how I treat people and conduct my life. All of us have times where we regretted sending that email or speaking those words. But we are human and make mistakes. We can, however, strive to improve our legal community by making wise choices and respecting the people with whom we work.

Ted Koppel once said, “Aspire to decency. Practice stability toward one another. Admire and emulate ethical behavior whenever you find it. Apply a rigid standard of morality to your life; and if, periodically, you fail as you surely will adjust your lives, not the standards.” And P.T. Barnum once said, “Politeness and civility are the best capital ever invested in business. Large doors, gilt signs, flaming advertisements, will all prove unavailing if you or your employees treat your patrons abruptly. The truth is, the more kind and liberal a man is, the more generous will be the patronage bestowed upon him.”

These two wise men said it quite well. And you always have the sage advice from the “Golden Rule” – “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” It is just as easy to speak kindly to the attorney on the other side of the court room or a deal as to be rude, abrasive and annoying.

Wake up every morning and remember to say something kind to at least one person throughout your day. You will be remembered for those kind words more than winning a case or extracting terms in a document. The choice is always yours and I would encourage you to strive to make the right one. The quality and success of your career will ALWAYS be enhanced if you follow these simple rules.

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IndyBar Member Headlines: Thursday, October 9

Share your news with the IndyBar by contacting Mary Kay Price, Director of Marketing & Communications, at mprice@indybar.org.

Brent D. Mosby has joined Ice Miller LLP’s business group as of counsel.

Shokrina Beering has been named Indiana University associate vice president for capital planning and facilities.

Theresa M. Ringle has joined Kopka Pinkus Dolin. & Eads PC and will focus on architecture and construction defense.

Leslie B. Pollie has joined Kopka Pinkus Dolin. & Eads PC and will focus on insurance defense.

Julia S. Hudson has joined Quarles & Brady LLP’s health law group as an associate.

Amy L. Stewart, family law and divorce attorney, and Timothy J. Bender, trust and estate planning attorney, have joined Mallor Grodner LLP as partners.

Daniel S. Chamberlain has joined Cohen & Malad LLP as a partner.

 

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Getting Along Is Not Wrong: Family Law Role Models

Civility. 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. Check out the newest entry below, and find new installments online at indybar.org/blog.

Mr. Eric J. Olson, Olson Law Office LLC -

I have been practicing law for about 11 years and have always done family law. I would estimate that I have handled more than 100 family law cases in those 11 years. Three attorneys stand out to me over those years.

First, Drew Soshnick. I opposed Drew on a case about three years ago. Drew has a reputation of being one of the best and most sought after attorneys in our state. Drew could not have been more fair, honest and accessible to me during our case. Since that case, Drew has offered me his mobile number and has always promptly returned phone calls of mine when I had any questions.

Second, Sheila Marshall. I have opposed Shelia on two different cases. Sheila was also very kind, honest and fair. Sheila is a wonderful attorney and a difficult attorney to oppose – not because she is unprofessional in any way, but because she is a very hard worker.

Finally, Erin Durnell. I found her to be very ethical, fair, honest and accessible. I also remember Erin offering evidence that could have been kept away from me until she needed it for rebuttal, which would have blindsided me. I will remember that and have very high respect for Erin.

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Bar Talk October: Legal News You Need to Know

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The latest legal scoop to keep you in the loop: Here are the top five stories from the IndyBar this month.

Please note: IndyBar news and updates are provided as a member benefit. You may be prompted to log-in to view some articles

Second Annual Day of Service a Success
By Andrea L. Ciobanu, Ciobanu Law PC
Indy Attorneys Network Section members volunteered their time for the second Annual Day of Service on September 20. Find out more about what they did and check out pictures from the day in this post by Andrea Ciobanu.
For more Indy Attorneys Network Section news, subscribe to this content here!

Indiana Supreme Court Reaffirms Separate Indiana Summary Judgment Standard
By Arend J. Abel, Cohen & Malad LLP
A unanimous Indiana Supreme Court decision has reaffirmed the Indiana summary judgment standard. Read more about the case in this piece by Arend J. Abel.
For more Appellate Practice Section news, subscribe to this content here!

WLD Volunteers: Making Meals and Making a Difference
By Roxana Bell, Bingham Greenbaum Doll LLP
Dozens of Women and the Law Division volunteers prepared meals for The Julian Center and Eskenazi EMBRACE Program’s families on September 6 and September 9. Roxana Bell writes about the event and what participants did to help in this post.
For more Women and the Law Division news, subscribe to this content here!

IP Attorney Deals in Digital Currency
IndyBar member Paul Overhauser is one of the only attorneys in the state to adopt Bitcoin into his legal practice, and a segment of his clients now pay using the digital currency. Find out more about how he’s branching into the Bitcoin market in this spotlight article. 
For more Intellectual Property Section news, subscribe to this content here!

Confessions of a Mediator
By Megan Weddle, Stowers & Weddle PC
This post by Megan Weddle talks about the frustrations and triumphs of working as a mediator. She also gives advice on how to make mediation more effective.
For more ADR Section news, subscribe to this content here.

If you’re hanging out with people who aren’t lawyers, here’s something even they will find interesting: Apple’s iOS 8 has sparked a battle between privacy and public interest, whether or not users realize it yet.

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miniBar Talk: This Week’s Top Post!

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Law Professor’s Clinic Targets Revenge Porn and Patent Trolls

Brooklyn Law School professor Jonathan Askin has involved law students in Incubator Project, which gives new tech companies free legal advice. At the most recent legal hack-athon, the students created a website to put an end to revenge porn. The site, “Take My Photo Down”, generates cease-and-desist letters for people to send companies that host explicit photos of them without their permission.

The project has produced a variety of other solutions for more than 700 new companies who can’t afford legal counsel. They focus on helping these startups fight patent trolls, draw up terms of services agreements and deal with getting sued.

To read more about how Askin hopes to bring the “hacker ethos to the legal profession” while giving students hands-on experience in the field, check out this article.

This content was submitted by Christina Clark of Wabash National Corporation. If you would like to submit content or write an article for a section webpage, please email Mary Kay Price at mprice@indybar.org.

To subscribe to more Women and the Law, Intellectual Property or Law Student 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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Getting Along is Not Wrong: Treat Others as Equals Despite Experience Level

Civility. 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. Check out the entry below and continue checking back for future installments.

Erin M. Durnell, Broyles Kight & Ricafort PC –

One of the first contested issues I litigated as a new lawyer was against the late Stephenie Jocham. During the course of the matter, she never reminded me that she had been practicing longer than I had, she was not overly aggressive in advocating her client’s position and while in court, she was gracious and respectful to me even as she zealously stood her ground on the issue at hand. Stephenie treated me as an equal even though she had more experience and could have tried to intimidate me. Some other attorneys I opposed during that time strutted around, instructing me about how long they had been practicing, but their bullying caused me to regard them with less, not more, respect. Stephenie, on the other hand, earned my respect as an adversary because she didn’t try to take advantage of the fact that I was the new kid on the block. I’ll never forget it.

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What You Need to Know When Reporting Pro Bono Hours

On Jan. 1, 2015, Rule 6.7 of the Indiana Rules of Professional Conduct will go into effect. This rule requires attorneys to report pro bono hours at the time of annual registration. James J. Bell, attorney at Bingham Greenebaum Doll LLP and secretary of the IndyBar Board of Directors, gives out helpful information that attorneys need to know about reporting pro bono hours.

Bell explains which cases qualify as pro bono and also how many hours must be reported. His article notes that Rule 6.7 will apply to many attorneys but does not apply to retired attorneys, members of the judiciary, judicial staff members or government lawyers prohibted from providing legal services outside of their employment.

Check out Bell’s article here so that, come 2015, you are a pro at reporting pro bono hours.

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Abrams: The IndyBar – More Than Just a Pretty Name

By Jeffrey A. Abrams, Benesch Friedlander Coplan & Aronoff LLP

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Last weekend, your executive officers and executive director attended the Conference of Metropolitan Bar Associations (COMBA) meeting in Scottsdale, Arizona. We met with bar associations from 20 cities and towns of comparable size to engage in a rigorous discussion of the challenges for bar associations as well as the programs, projects and services that have worked well in our respective communities. We were fortunate to provide our bar association friends with details on several of the programs, project and services that have worked successfully in Indianapolis, but more importantly, we were enriched with other programs, projects and services that other communities had successfully established. We all agreed that one challenge with our membership and with those attorneys who are not members is trying to effectively communicate all of the different projects, programs and services that our respective bar associations engage in.

Nearly one year ago, at our board retreat, we asked all of the board members to write down as many programs, projects and services that the IndyBar provided. Admittedly, many of us, yours truly included, were only able to name from some to substantially less than all of the amazing good deeds in which we participate. It was amazing to most people to learn that we have more than 100 projects, programs and services offered to our members, lawyers and the community.

I thought it would be beneficial to include a list of just some of these since I know that each of you have some interest in helping somebody. We do it every day with our clients, but we also have the opportunity to help other less privileged people.

20 Sections
4 Divisions
100+ Live CLE Programs Each Year
50+ Social/Networking Events Each Year
Amicus Curiae Committee
Applied Professionalism Course
Ask a Lawyer
Attorneys for an Independent Bench Standing Committee
Bankruptcy Help Line
Bench Bar Conference
Bill Watch Legislative Reports
Destination CLE
Election Inspector Training
Go Green Committee
Government Practice Section Debate Series
Green Legal Initiative
Grievance Committee
HEAL (Helping Enrich Attorneys Lives)
Homeless Project
Hospice Program
Indiana Appellate Institute
Indiana Judicial Biographies Project
Indy Lawyer Finder
IndyBar Bar Leader Series
IndyBar Diversity Job Fair
IndyBar Job Bank
IndyBar Review Course
IndyBar Social Media: Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn
Judicial and Attorney Criticism Response Committees
Judicial Excellence Standing Committee
Justice Center Task Force
Lawyer Referral Service
Lawyers Helping Lawyers Task Force
Legal Line
Legal Services Task Force
Legislative Committee
Leonard H. Opperman Bankruptcy Roundtable
Low Asset Will Program
Marion County Superior Court Pro Bono Program
Mediation Day
Mentor/Job Shadow Project
Modest Means Referrals: Criminal and Family Law
Navigating the Legal System Video Series
Online CLE Catalog
Online Forms Library
Online Legal Directory
Paralegal Committee
Professionalism Task Force
Project Counsel Posting Board
Public Outreach Committee
Resume Postings
Safe Ask Program
Surviving & Thriving: Essentials for Starting or Improving Your Solo/Small Practice
Women & the Law Division Mentoring Program
Women & the Law Division Symposium
Young Lawyers Division Intro to Indy Series

Please take two minutes to review this list and when you find one or more things that pique your interest, please call the office at 269-2000 and ask who is in charge of the program(s), project(s) or service(s) that is of interest to you. Follow up and get engaged. I am confident that once you talk with a staff member or a fellow member of our bar, you will be emotionally charged to figure out how to participate and enrich the life of somebody, including your own.

If you don’t find something to engage in, then I would ask that you call me at 632-3232 and let me know what else we can do in our community. In advance, thank you for your interest in getting involved. You will not regret the call.

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