To The Readers Of The Metropolitan Corporate Counsel :
Abraham Lincoln, a great lawyer and our 16th President, stated: 'You cannot escape the responsibility of tomorrow by evading it today.' We all have a responsibility, not only to ourselves as the future lawyers of this state, but also to those young lawyers who enter our ranks each year behind us, to take the responsibility to assure that our profession maintains its honorable and significant place in society. I have no doubt that the young lawyers of Florida are some of the best in the nation and that we will succeed in our endeavors.
Today more than 20,000 Florida Bar members qualify as Young Lawyers, and our numbers are growing. I, myself, come from a smaller jurisdiction and a smaller firm. I realize that some, if not many, of our recent admittees to the Florida Bar are required to start their own practices. Obviously, this means that not only are our newest attorneys experiencing the challenge of learning the practice of law, but are also required to manage and operate a small business and all of the difficulties that entails.
I envision that the Young Lawyers Division will seek to dramatically increase its financial aid-based scholarships to various practicing with professionalism (PWP) and basic level continuing legal education (CLE) programs so that those of our ranks with fewer financial resources will be able to attend these necessary course requirements without strapping an already strained budget. Also, I hope that all members of the Division will contact me or their local representatives on any issue they find important and help the leaders of your division address any future problems or issues that may arise including the mentoring of our newest lawyers, attacks on our independent judiciary and attacks on The Florida Bar's self-governance, to name just a few.
If you would like to learn more about what the Division does or how you can become involved, do not hesitate to contact me at Stewart & Evans, P.A., P.O. Box 3345, Vero Beach, Florida 32964-3345, telephone (772) 231-3500, facsimile (772) 231-9876, or email email@example.com.
John M. Stewart