Thursday, March 12, 2009
 |  An e-Newsbrief from the Philadelphia Bar Association  | 
Vol. 10, No. 20
 

Arianna Huffington to Address Bar Members April 1

Political commentator Arianna Huffington, co-founder and editor-in-chief of The Huffington Post, will be the keynote speaker at the Association's Wednesday, April 1 Quarterly Meeting and Luncheon at 12 p.m. at the Park Hyatt Philadelphia at the Bellevue.

Immediate-Past Chancellor A. Michael Pratt will be honored at the event. Pratt will be presented with a gold box, an exact replica of the one presented to Andrew Hamilton for his defense of John Peter Zenger in 1735. The gold box is presented annually to the immediate-past Chancellor and is inscribed with the message "acquired not by money, but by character."

Huffington is also a nationally syndicated columnist, and author of 12 books. She is also co-host of "Left, Right & Center," public radio's popular political roundtable program. She launched The Huffington Post in May 2005, and the news and blog site has become one of the most widely read, linked to, and frequently cited media brands on the Internet.

Tickets are $55 for members and $60 for non-members and can be purchased online at by clicking here.

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The Legal Directory 2009 includes 18,000+ attorney entries and nearly 1,700 law firm listings. It's also jammed with indispensable resources - information on federal, state and county courts and government agencies; judges' index; roster of law-related organizations; corporate counsel listings; Bar Association bylaws, contacts and committees; and a special resource section tailored to the legal community. Online lawyer and law firm listings are updated year-round, making this resource an essential complement to your printed Directory.

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Renew Bar Association Membership Today and Save

Members have until April 1 to renew their Bar Association memberships at 2008 prices. Members renewing after April 1 will face a 5 percent increase in their dues. Click here to renew your membership.

Benefits of membership include:

You'll attend informative workshops, meetings and special programs and receive significant discounts on continuing legal education courses offered through the Pennsylvania Bar Institute and the Philadelphia Bar Association. At sessions sponsored by more than 50 committees, nine sections and two divisions, you'll meet and network with colleagues who are experts in every possible legal specialty. You'll interact with people who can help you grow your practice and thrive in your profession.

Within our Young Lawyers Division or as part of one of our many pro bono or public service projects, you will test the broad range of your interests and make valuable contributions to the community while sharing in the proud legacy of the Philadelphia lawyer.

You'll have ongoing access to our ethics hotline which brings more than 20 years of ethics experience to answer your questions. In addition, you can request formal written guidance from our Professional Guidance Committee.

Through our monthly Philadelphia Bar Reporter newspaper, The Philadelphia Lawyer quarterly magazine, our philadelphiabar.org web site, our bi-weekly Bar Reporter Online e-newsbrief and monthly online substantive law publication Upon Further Review, you'll receive a regular menu of information that will update you and keep you connected to our professional family day after day.

You'll benefit from our comprehensive, economical membership insurance package, including professional liability insurance, complete health coverage, group term life insurance, a disability income plan and more. You'll also be able to take advantage of discounted rates on credit cards, health clubs and rental cars.

Finally, our legislative program - under the direction of a full-time, on-site staff attorney and a special consultant in the state Capitol - will champion your interests to lawmakers at City Hall, in Harrisburg and in Washington.

Click here to renew your membership.

Annual Conference CLE Proposals Sought

The Association's Bench Bar and Annual Conference will be held Friday, Oct. 23 and Saturday, Oct. 24 at Harrah's Hotel and Casino in Atlantic City, N.J.

The Conference opens Oct. 23 with the Association's Quarterly Meeting and Luncheon and the presentation of the Sandra Day O'Connor and Ruth Bader Ginsburg Legal Writing awards. There will be continuing legal education programs on Friday afternoon and Saturday morning, including a "State of the Court" address. Friday night's reception will provide an opportunity for networking over a great buffet (and dancing for those inclined).

Proposals for the continuing legal education courses should be submitted to Conference co-chairs Maria Feeley (feeleym@pepperlaw.com) or Molly Peckman (molly.peckman@dechert.com) by Wednesday, March 18. They should include a brief description of the program, the identity of the course planner, and likely faculty members. Programs should be one to one-and-a-half hours long, with no more than four panelists. The proposed panels should include members of the Bench when appropriate and be representative of our Association. Decisions regarding the programs selected will be made by March 31.

Class Certification Discussion March 13

The Federal Courts and Business Litigation Committees will present a discussion "In re Hydrogen Peroxide: Leveling the Field or Changing the Landscape for Class Certification?" on Friday, March 13.

Panelists include Steven E. Bizar, Anthony J. Bolognese, Roberta D. Liebenberg and Barbara Sicalides. The program will be moderated by U.S. District Court Judge Jan DuBois.

The meeting begins at 12:30 p.m. in the 11th Floor Conference Center of Bar Association headquarters, 1101 Market St. Lunch is available for $8 for those members who register in advance. Click here to RSVP for this program.

Get Admitted to U.S. Supreme Court May 4

The Philadelphia Bar Association will move up to 50 of our members for admission to the Bar of the United States Supreme Court on Monday, May 4. The admission ceremony will be made to the full court sitting in Washington, D.C.

The court's requirements for a group admission ceremony are very rigid. To review these requirements and to download the forms for admission please visit the Supreme Court's web site at supremecourtus.gov. Select the Bar Admissions tab on the left-hand side and this will bring you to the link for the Bar Admissions Form and Bar Admissions Instructions. Please read the instructions carefully. Once you have determined that you are eligible for admission, please print out and complete the Admission Form. The instructions and guidelines are very specific and must be followed scrupulously. Do not fold the application or use staples. Use paper clips only.

Once you have successfully completed the Admission Form, please mail it along with a check for $200 made payable to the Philadelphia Bar Association to: Dawn Petit, 1101 Market Street, 11th Floor, Philadelphia, PA 19107. Do not send the application directly to the Supreme Court.

The event will be on a first-come, first-served basis and all applications must be received by 5 p.m. on Monday, March 16, 2009.

If you have any questions regarding this event, please do not hesitate to contact Dawn Petit at 215-238-6367 or dpetit@philabar.org.

Pros and Cons of Full-Time Appellate Practice March 17

Charles W. Craven and Barbara W. Mather will discuss the the pros and cons of having a full-time appellate practice vs. a full-service practice that includes part-time appellate work at the Tuesday, March 17 meeting of the Appellate Courts Committee.

The meeting begins at 12 p.m. in the 11th floor Conference Center of Bar Association headquarters, 1101 Market St. Lunch is available for $8 for those members who register in advance. Click here to RSVP for this program.

Sandra Day O'Connor Award Nominees Sought

The Women in the Profession Committee is seeking nominations for the 2009 Sandra Day O'Connor Award. Deadline for nominations is Tuesday, March 17.

The award is conferred annually on a woman attorney who has demonstrated superior legal talent, achieved significant legal accomplishments and has furthered the advancement of women in both the profession and the community. The award presentation will be made during the October Quarterly Meeting.

The committee established the award in 1993 to recognize the important contributions that women attorneys in Philadelphia have made to the legal profession. Click here to download a nomination form.

Workers' Comp CLE on IREs March 18

The Workers' Compensation Section will present the lunchtime CLE program "Everything You Wanted to Know About IREs" on Wednesday, March 18.

Panelists for the program are Mark M. Mazzanti and Mark Schmidt. The program has been approved for 1 substantive CLE credit. Participants wishing to receive the CLE credit will be required to pay a fee of $25 for members of the Philadelphia Bar Association admitted for more than five years, and $20 for members of the Philadelphia Bar Association admitted for less than five years. If you wish to register in advance please visit pbi.org or call PBI Customer Service at 1-800-932-4637.

Lunch and registration begin at 12 p.m. in the 11th floor Conference Center of Bar Association headquarters, 1101 Market St. Lunch is available for $8 for those members who register in advance. Click here to RSVP for this program.

Business Pre-Sale Planning Program March 18

The Mergers & Acquisitions Committee will host the discussion "Preparing the Company for Sale - Pre-Sale Planning for a Successful Exit Transaction" on Wednesday, March 18.

Speakers include Peter D. Cripps, Spector Gadon & Rosen, P.C., and Frank Michel and Chad Byers of Brandywine Mergers & Acquisitions, LLC, Malvern.

The meeting begins at 12 p.m. at the offices of Kleinbard Bell & Brecker LLP, One Liberty Place, 46th Floor, 1650 Market St. Lunch will be provided for members of the Business Law Section who register in advance. Please RSVP to Patricia D'Ercole, at 215-568-2000 or pdercole@kleinbard.com.

Financial Terms in Buy-Out Provisions CLE

The Business Organizations Committee will present the lunchtime CLE program "Financial Terms in Buy-Out Provisions of Operating and Similar Agreements" on Thursday, March 19.

Practitioners are faced with many choices for valuing ownership interests in a business. What are the pros and cons of each? Attorneys are usually skilled at defining procedures, such as using accountants or appraisers, averaging results of two different experts and the like. This seminar takes such drafting to the next level: appropriately defining the financial formulas to be used in the valuation process as well as the instructions or even limitations to be placed on the valuation expert's analysis. Attendees should have prior experience in drafting buy-out provisions in operating and similar agreements. Panelists include R. Victor Haas Jr., ASA of Haas Business valuation Services, Inc., Ardmore; and Paul J. Jaskot, Reed Smith LLP.

The program has been approved for 1 substantive CLE credit. Participants wishing to receive the CLE credit will be required to pay a fee of $33.50 for members of the Philadelphia Bar Association admitted for more than five years, and $28.50 for members of the Philadelphia Bar Association admitted for less than five years. Interested parties not seeking CLE credit may attend and purchase lunch for the fee of $8.50. If you wish to register in advance please visit pbi.org or call PBI Customer Service at 1-800-932-4637. The program begins at 12:30 p.m. at The CLE Conference Center on the 10th Floor of the Wanamaker Building, 13th and Market streets. Lunch and registration begin at 11:45 a.m.

Ronald McDonald House Volunteers Needed March 24

The Young Lawyers Division has been invited to cook and serve dinner to residents at the new Ronald McDonald House located on Front and Erie Street as part of its Family Meal Program on Tuesday, March 24. We will begin dinner preparations around 4 p.m. and serve dinner at 6 p.m.

The Ronald McDonald House is a home-away-from-home for families and their seriously ill children who are being treated at area hospitals. The dinner that the YLD will provide through the Family Meal Program provides the families with a nutritious meal that might otherwise be skipped and also creates an opportunity for families to share their stories and experiences.

If you are interested, please contact Dave Koller at dmkoller2002@yahoo.com or 215-460-3343. Once the group is finalized, David will be in touch with each volunteer to discuss what's cooking. Suggestions and recipes are welcome!

The event is absolutely free, but space is extremely limited, so advanced registration is required. Gated parking is available directly on the house property, and directions will be provided.

Career Development Meeting on Network Building March 25

Join the Attorney Career Development Committee for a discussion on "Building A Network: Key to New Clients and Career Opportunities" on Wednesday, March 25.

Speakers for the program include Mary Beth Pratt, president of the Greater Philadelphia Legal Marketing Association; Greg Nowak, a partner with Pepper Hamilton LLP active in multiple community associations; and Arthur Bousel of Lawyer 2 Lawyer Coaching.

The panelists will illustrate the simplicity of good networking through their own experiences. An interactive conversation among audience and panel will follow. Focus will be on practical take-away suggestions that attorneys can integrate into a busy work day. A few minutes of "Speed Networking" (very brief personal introductions) will precede the panel discussion.

The meeting begins at 12 p.m. in the 10th floor Board Room of Bar Association headquarters, 1101 Market St. Lunch is available for $8 for those members who register in advance. Click here to RSVP for this program. Attorneys interested in joining this committee should contact Andrea Morris, membership coordinator, at amorris@philabar.org 215-238-6313.

"After Madoff" CLE March 31

Aaron Krauss will present the lunchtime CLE program "After Madoff: The Anatomy of a Fraud and Strategies for Recovery" on Tuesday, March 31.

This course, presented by the Business Law Section and the State Civil Litigation Section, will suggest ways to identify potential targets for fraud recovery, as well as the strengths and weaknesses of various legal theories that can be used to attempt to recover. This course will also sug-gest ways to balance the potential for recovery with the likely costs, so that clients can minimize the risk of "throwing good money after bad."

The program has been approved for 1 substantive CLE credit. Participants wishing to receive the CLE credit will be required to pay a fee of $33.50 for members of the Philadelphia Bar Association admitted for more than five years, and $28.50 for members of the Philadelphia Bar Association admitted for less than five years. Interested parties not seeking CLE credit may attend and purchase lunch for the fee of $8.50. If you wish to register in advance please visit pbi.org or call PBI Customer Service at 1-800-932-4637. The program will be held at The CLE Conference Center on the10th floor of the Wanamaker Building.

Workers' Comp Lifetime Achievement Lunch April 15

The Workers' Compensation Section will present its inaugural Lifetime Achievement Award to Joseph S. Bekelja at a luncheon featuring keynote remarks by novelist and Philadelphia lawyer Lisa Scottoline on Wednesday, April 15.

Bekelja, a partner with Margolis Edelstein, has been a "teacher, leader, mentor and role model not just for workers' compensation attorneys but for all attorneys," said Workers' Compensation Bureau Judge A. Michael Snyder, one of the Section's co-chairs. The April 15 program is being co-hosted by the Women in the Profession Committee, Criminal Justice Section and the Law Practice Management Division. The program is sponsored by Summit Pharmacy.

Bekelja received his Bachelor of Science from the University of Notre Dame and his Juris Doctorate, cum laude, from Georgetown University. Bekelja was house counsel for Nationwide Insurance Company as well as house counsel for Yellow Cab Company before joining the firm. He is admitted to practice in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania and the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. He has been associated with Margolis Edelstein since 1974 and has been a partner in the firm since 1981.

Scottoline, a Philadelphia-based lawyer-writer, had her first novel Everywhere That Mary Went, published in 1994. It became a bestseller and was nominated for the Edgar Award, the most prestigious award given in crime fiction, awarded by the Mystery Writers of America. Her second novel, Final Appeal, was also nominated for and received an Edgar Award. Since then she has written 11 more legal suspense novels.

Tickets to the luncheon are $50 for Association members and includes a copy of Scottoline's new book Look Again, which will be released April 14. Tickets are $45 for YLD members and $60 for nonmembers. Visit philadelphiabar.org to register for this event.

Public Interest Training Sessions, Events

The University of Pennsylvania will host the presentation "The Need for A Bailout for the Constitutional Right to Counsel," featuring Stephen B. Bright, president and senior counsel at the Southern Center for Human Rights, on Monday, March 16 from 5 to 6 p.m., at the Levy Conference Center, Room S240B, Penn Law School, 3400 Chestnut St. The presentation will be followed by a reception. This event is free and open to the public. RSVP to Jen Pesavento by March 13 at jpesaven@law.upenn.edu. Space is limited.

The Pennsylvania Health Law Project will present "Challenges & Opportunities: A Briefing on Healthcare Provisions in Gov. Rendell's & President Obama's Budget Proposals," on Thursday, March 12, from 9 to 11:00 a.m. in the Philadelphia Bar Association’s 11th Floor Conference Center. Please RSVP by calling the Pennsylvania Health Law Project Help-line at 1-800-274-3258 or 1-866-236-6310 (TTY) or e-mailing staff@phlp.org. The Pennsylvania Legal Aid Network will present its 2009 Excellence Awards at its annual dinner on Tuesday, March 31, at the Harrisburg Hilton & Towers. The event will begin with a social hour from 5 to 6 p.m., followed by a buffet dinner, featuring keynote speaker U.S. Court of Appeals Judge Marjorie O. Rendell. Winners the 2009 Excellent Awards include Karen Detamore, executive director of Friends of Farmworkers; and Richard Weishaupt, senior attorney at Community Legal Services. Also being recognized with Excellence Awards are U.S. District Court Judge C. Darnell Jones II and Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas, Judge Annette Rizzo for their work relating to the groundbreaking Residential Mortgage Foreclosure Diversion Pilot Program that was implemented in the Court of Common Pleas of Philadelphia County in 2008.

The HomeWorks Project is also being recognized by PLAN for a unique and innovative collaboration between Regional Housing Legal Services and the Pennsylvania Health Law Project to develop a supportive housing project tailored to the needs of a group of disabled individuals. Individual attorneys being recognized in connection with the project include David Gates, PA Health Law Project, and Kim Dolan, Regional Housing Legal Services. Tickets cost $45 each. For more information about this event or to make reservations online, Click here.

The Public Interest Section's Law School Outreach Committee will present a Public Interest Fellowships Panel and Reception on Tuesday, March 31, from 3:30 to 6 p.m. in the 11th Floor Conference Center at the Philadelphia Bar Association. Martin Costello of Equal Justice Works, Susan Heckrotte of the Independence Foundation, and past fellowship recipients will talk about fellowship opportunities and how to develop a winning proposal. Panelists will discuss how to identify a sponsor, develop a great project and prepare for your interview. Wine and cheese reception to follow sponsored by the area law schools and the Public Interest Section of the Bar Association. Click here to register online.

Philadelphia VIP will present a pro bono CLE training program on divorce on Friday, April 3, from 12 to 2:15 p.m., at Dechert LLP, 2929 Arch St. Two CLE credits will be provided in exchange for handling a pro bono case referred by VIP. To register, please call VIP at 215-523-9550.

Support Center for Child Advocates will present the pro bono training program "How to Handle A Child Abuse Case," from on Monday, April 13 from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., at The CLE Conference Center on the 10th floor of the Wanamaker Building. Five substantive CLE credits and one ethics CLE credits provided. To register, contact PBI at 1-800-247-4724.

Business Development in a Down Market March 19

The Legal Marketing Association Metropolitan Philadelphia Chapter will host "Business Development in a Down Market" on Thursday, March 19 that will address how to capture, and often redirect, the enthusiasm and energy lawyers have when they first approach marketing professionals for assistance.

The panelists will share higher leverage activities that they have seen work in slow markets and are utilizing in their firms to strengthen relationships and grow their business. They will also discuss activities that keep you out in front of the lawyers and let you drive activities versus responding to concepts.

Speakers include Lisa Hass, partner and director of business development, Cozen O'Connor; Linda Fleming, director of business development, Buchanan, Ingersoll & Rooney; Joseph Goldshear, marketing and business development specialist, Marshall, Dennehey, Warner, Coleman & Goggin; and Donna Kearney, business development manager, Wolf Block. The program will be moderated by Robert Randolph, director of marketing and business development, Bryan Cave LLP. Sponsored by Hubbard One, a Westlaw business, who offers consulting, technology, analytical and implementation services for the legal industry, the program will be held from 12 to 1:30 p.m. at Table 31, Comcast Center, 1701 JFK Blvd., Philadelphia, PA. The cost of attending the event is $10 for members of the LMA and $25 for non-members. If you are interested in attending, please register online or contact Shellee E. Buchanan at (215) 864-8755 or Buchanans@ballardspahr.com with any questions.

Celebrate Formation of Pa. Innocence Project April 7

A reception will be held Tuesday, April 7 to celebrate the formation of the Pennsylvania Innocence Project, an organization dedicated to exonerating persons imprisoned in Pennsylvania for crimes they did not commit and to eliminating the causes of wrongful convictions.

The program will be held at the National Consitution Center, 525 Arch St., beginning at 5 p.m. with a private viewing of the America I Am exhibit. The program and reception will follow. Speakers for the program include JoAnne Epps, dean, Temple University Beasley School of Law; Pa. state Sen. Stewart J. Greenleaf, chair of the Pennsylvania Senate Judiciary Committee; Peter J. Neufeld, co-founder and co-director of Innocence Project at Cadozo Law School and Jennifer Thompson-Cannino, eyewitness whose testimony convicted exoneree Ronald Cotton and co-author with Cotton of Picking Cotton: Our Story of Injustice and Redemption.

Tickets are $25 and include admission of America I Am exhibit, cocktails and hors d'oeuvres. For more information, contact Amy Hastings at (215) 981-4249. Click here to register.

Brandeis Foundation Scholarship Lunch April 21

Area law school students who have demonstrated an interest in and involvement with Jewish religion, law or ethics will be honored at the Brandeis Law Foundation scholarship luncheon on Tuesday, April 21 at 12 p.m. at the Union League of Philadelphia, Broad and Sansom Streets.

According to Mayer Horwitz, president of the Foundation, the scholarships will be awarded in the name of Philadelphia Common Pleas Court Judges Abraham J. Gafni (Ret.) and Sandra Mazer Moss. "This is our way of recognizing these two outstanding jurists, perpetuating our heritage and passing something onto future generations," Horwitz says. "Judges Gafni and Moss are worthy role models for these future lawyers."

The Judge Abraham J. Gafni award is a $1,000 cash prize given to a second or third year Jewish law student at a Philadelphia area law school who has demonstrated an interest and involvement in Jewish Religion, Law, or Ethics.
The Judge Sandra Mazer Moss Award is a $1,000 cash prize given to a single parent law student at a Philadelphia area law school who strives for personal achievement, success and excellence in the law.

Brandeis Law Society Chancellor Louis Podel praises the work of the Foundation and encourages everyone to attend the luncheon. "This event is especially gratifying," he says.

The event is chaired by Philadelphia Bar Association Chancellor and Brandeis Law Society member Sayde J. Ladov who notes that all area law school deans have been invited to the luncheon along with members of the local judiciary.

Tickets for the luncheon are $65 for members of the Bar and $25 for judges, law clerks, law students and public interest lawyers. Tables of 10 can be purchased for $500. For tickets, indicate the number of attendees and price category and send it along with a check made payable to the "Brandeis Law Society" to Mitchell H. Klevan, Esq., 1515 Market St., Suite 1410, Philadelphia, PA 19102. More information can be found at the Society's web site at brandeislawsociety.org.

The Brandeis Law Foundation is the charitable arm of the Brandeis Law Society.
The Louis D. Brandeis Law Society is a Jewish law society, dedicated to advancing and enriching the personal and professional interests of members of the Bench and Bar. It promotes opportunities for leadership development, social interaction, education and community service.
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