The Virginia Bar Association                                                         January 2, 2014
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 The independent voice of Virginia lawyers

Advocacy, Professionalism,

Service, Collegiality

In This Issue
Renew Your VBA Membership
New Year, New CLE Titles?
Welcome, New Members
Inauguration in Virginia
2014 Legislative Agenda
Judicial Funding Campaign
Annual Meeting 2014
VBA Journal, Winter Issue
Member News


Have you renewed your dues for 2014?
You can renew online, as mentioned in emails sent Nov. 1 and Nov. 20. It's as easy as 1-2-3-4-5: 
  1. Go to
  2. Find Member Login and sign in (first timers: your username is your email; the password is VBA). 
    Member Login detail  
  3. Click on Members Only Section
  4. On the left side of the screen under your name click on renew.
  5. Verify/update contact information, add or drop section memberships, consider a 2014 gift to The VBA Foundation, then make payment

You will immediately receive confirmation of payment and membership renewal.  


Paper invoices were mailed last month to members who had not yet renewed.    


Upcoming events
Jan. 23-25
 124th Annual Meeting in collaboration with the Old Dominion Bar Association, 
Williamsburg, VA

April 2 
The Chief Justice's Pro Bono Summit, 
Richmond, VA

July 24-27
124th Summer Meeting, 
White Sulphur Springs, WV
VBA Online CLE logo
CLE-approved! On-demand!

The dawn of the new year is a great time to see what new, interesting titles have been uploaded to the VBA Online CLE catalog.  

Watch a video or listen to the audio of some of the best programming for Virginia attorneys, organized by your peers in the VBA.


As a valued member of the VBA, you receive a discount. Non-members also can enjoy these quality presentations.  


Welcome, new and reactivating members!
During December, 12 individuals joined or reactivated their membership with the VBA. Thanks for getting (re)acquainted!

If you ever have a question about membership, please contact Katie Heflin, our member coordinator.

Inauguration of state's
top leaders is Jan. 11

Gov.-elect Terry McAuliffeThe inauguration of Virginia's 72nd governor, Terry McAuliffe, along with Lieutenant Governor Ralph S. Northam and Attorney General Mark R. Herring will be held at noon on Saturday, Jan. 11, at the Virginia State Capitol. The event will be streamed live on the Internet from the House and Senate video feeds on

Viewers with an Internet connection can look in on what state lawmakers in the House of Delegates and the Senate are doing during the 2014 General Assembly session, which begins at noon on Wednesday, Jan. 8. Both houses will offer live streaming video of the session. Go to, select the Members and Session tab, then on the Session tab and click on the View House or View Senate icon.   

AG-elect appoints two

VBA members H. Lane Kneedler III and Stuart A. Raphael will be senior officials in the office of incoming Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring.


McLean attorney Raphael is part of the litigation team of Hunton & Williams LLP. He will serve as solicitor general, the paper reported. 


Kneedler will serve as senior counsel, Virginia Lawyers Weekly reported. He is currently with Reed Smith LLP in Richmond and is a former chief deputy attorney general.


Herring has been a VBA member continuously since 1990.    


The VBA Voice
It's a new year. A new start. Hope is fresh for a year bigger and better than all the preceding years.

The same is true at the VBA. If we can play a part in making your ambitious dreams come true -- to make us even more worthy of your investment in the VBA -- just let us know.

The 2014 legislative session is almost here

Virginia State Capitol PHOTO Marilyn Shaw

The VBA's legislative agenda for 2014 addresses a dozen issues plus a continuation of the effort to support fully funding the judicial need in Virginia. The lobbying team at Reed Smith LLP has laid the groundwork for another successful session.  


Once the session begins, stay informed about the VBA-backed initiatives on the VBA's Legislation page, at Updates will be posted every Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Find them under Bill progress at a glance in the right-hand navigation. 

Getting the word out about judicial vacancies

The VBA's effort to shine a light on the need for additional judges and state funding to fill vacancies is gaining steam.


Barbara S. Williams wrote about the matter in her president's column in the  Dec. 10 issue of the Virginia Trial Lawyers Association's Law Letter Online:
"Unfilled Judicial Vacancies=Justice Delayed and Endangered." 


Virginia Business editor Robert Powell wrote about the matter in his column in the magazine's January issue: "Legislature must do justice by the state's court system."   


Member L. Steven Emmert mentioned the issue in his Virginia Appellate News & Analysis blog on Nov. 22. 


The Virginia Chamber has included the pro-business policy of "an equitable and fair legal system" in its Blueprint Virginia plan to strengthen and expand Virginia's economy to maintain Virginia's rank as the best state for business.


The Fairfax Chamber of Commerce also has pledge its advocacy.    


Some news stories refer to the National Center of State Courts weighted judicial caseloads report:

Study calls for more judges in Virginia (The Free Lance-Star)

Study: More judges needed (Bristol Herald Courier)

Judicial balancing act: Weighted case study calls for shifts (Virginia Lawyers Weekly)[subscription required] 

Report shows Virginia needs more judges (WHSV-TV)      


Annual Meeting activities for your spouse/guest

2014 AnnMtg ad

You and your spouse or guest attending the 124th Annual Meeting are invited to attend the welcome reception on Thursday, Jan. 23, from 6:30-7:30 p.m.

The meeting also offers a culinary demonstration and tasting on "Chocolate: It's All that Matters." Separate registration and fee are required, at $30 per person. This spouse/guest program will be from 10-11:30 a.m. on Friday, Jan. 24.

The Legacy Series Luncheon Presentation on the topic of African-American education in Virginia before Brown v. Board of Education, runs from 12:30-2 p.m. that Friday. Advanced registration is required and luncheon tickets are $40 per person.

A black-tie reception, banquet and dance follows at 6 p.m. After-dinner entertainment will be provided by Flashback Band.

Spouses and guests also are invited to the annual breakfast and business meeting on Saturday, Jan. 25, from 8 to 9:15 a.m. Registrants are welcome at a 12:30-1:30 p.m. reception.

The 2014 Annual Meeting will be held in collaboration with the Old Dominion Bar Association.     


Ellett, ABA delegate, makes VBA Journal cover

VBA Journal Winter 2013-4 Cover The print version of the winter 2013-2014 issue of the VBA Journal is in the mail. The digital version is already posted and includes the endnotes to Judge D. Arthur Kelsey's article about how English common law continues to play a prominent role in Virginia courts.  


In addition to the customary columns and a listing of The VBA Foundation donors, you'll find articles about the Commission on the Needs of Children and Virginia's uniform law commissioners.


Let us know what you think of the issue. We're also seeking your ideas for articles. Send them today to editor Marilyn Shaw.


VBA member news

GOT NEWS? Send your announcements about VBA members to Communications Coordinator Marilyn Shaw.

VA state Bar seal MOVING: After 17 years located in the 700 block of E. Main Street, the Virginia State Bar office is moving. The new digs will be on the seventh floor of the Bank of America building in downtown Richmond, at 1111 E. Main St.

VBA member and Fairfax Bar Association President Edward L. Weiner is the president-elect designee of the Virginia State Bar. The VSB reports that Weiner, founder and senior partner at Weiner, Spivey & Miller, PLC, in Fairfax, will be president in 2015-16.

The next state secretary of public safety will be Brian J. Moran, a former Arlington County prosecutor, delegate from Alexandria and Democratic Part of Virginia chairman. Gov.-elect Terry McAuliffe announced the news Dec. 14, the Richmond Times-Dispatch reported. ... James W. Van Horn Jr. has joined Hirschler Fleischer as a partner in the Richmond office. His background is in advising middle-market businesses and private investment funds. ... John G. Butler III joined Sinnot Nuckols & Logan, P.C., as a partner, RichmondBizSense reported. His practice focuses on general liability and civil litigation defense.

The Free Lance-Star reported that four longtime Fredericksburg attorneys plan to retire in the next few months. They include Bill Sokol of Sokol & Jones, who has been a continuous VBA member since 1967.

Several VBA members will serve on the inaugural Access to Justice Commission, including immediate past YLD chair Daniel E. Ortiz of Blankingship and Keith, P.C., and Scott C. Oostdyk of McGuireWoods. Virginia Lawyers Weekly identified all 18 members of the panel chaired by state Supreme Court Justice S. Bernard Goodwyn. ... The U.S. Senate confirmed Patricia Millett to the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.

20-year VBA member David Neumeyer CORRECTION: The December 2013 issue of The VBA Voice listed members of the organization who became 20-year members. David B. Neumeyer's name was missing from the list. We regret the error and applaud Mr. Neumeyer of the Virginia Legal Aid Society in Lynchburg for his long and committed involvement.
The Virginia Bar Association is the largest statewide voluntary group for lawyers, judges and law professors.
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