To The Readers Of The Metropolitan Corporate Counsel:
As I reflect on my year as president of this organization, I am reminded how much I love being a lawyer.
Since taking the oath of office at the annual meeting and convention in Atlantic City last May, I have traveled to every county in the state and had an opportunity to be reminded of the wonderful people who are attorneys in this state and the many great things they have accomplished for their clients and community.
Working together with our members, the New Jersey State Bar Association has achieved a great deal in the past year.
We have had a banner year, in terms of legislative advocacy. Thanks to the willingness of our volunteers to work with legislators and go to Trenton to testify, we have seen a number of NJSBA-authored bills signed into law. Chief among these are measures that revised the Uniform Limited Liability Company Act, addressed concerns related to child custody and parenting-time arrangements when one of the parents is in the military, and created the New Jersey Adjust Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Jurisdiction Act. In addition, the state bar association was an active and meaningful voice in the discussions to end the stalemate over judicial appointments. We were also instrumental in the defeat of an unreasonable bill that raised some court filing fees in the name of creating an e-court system. Because we agree with the concept of e-courts, we instead advocated safeguards and a process to review fee hikes. Together, we have helped make New Jersey a better place for the profession and members of the public.
I was pleased to honor the legislators whose efforts have helped advance the association’s mission at a recent statehouse reception. Last month, I presented seven legislators with the Robert B. Meyner Award, which recognizes the exceptional advocacy efforts of public officials in the advancement of the association’s mission. It was a great day to celebrate our accomplishments, build alliances, and share information about our legislative advocacy with members of the public and the statehouse community.
I urge you to take part in the NJSBA Annual Meeting and Convention from May 15 -17 at Borgata, Hotel, Casino and Spa. This year’s event is shaping up to be one of the most important in years. The convention will include a suite of programs examining the threats to judicial independence the judiciary has faced through history and today through discussions with legal scholars, experts and members from every branch of government. This year, we are also honored that all five sitting members of the New Jersey Supreme Court, nearly all of the state’s assignment judges, as well as a host of Appellate Division, Superior Court, Municipal, and Federal District Court jurists have agreed to speak on education panels. In addition to members of the bench, other featured guests include Senate President Stephen Sweeney, Attorney General Jeffrey S. Chiesa U. S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman, Rutgers Law School Dean John J. Farmer Jr., and many more.
It has been a great year, and I am positive next year will be even better. I look forward to what the future brings. Thank you for allowing me to serve you.
Kevin P. McCann