The latest news and information from your law partner for life

The independent voice of Virginia lawyers             Nov. 2, 2016.
Dear ,
It's November and we're thankful. Thankful for each and every one of the members who make this organization warm, welcoming and wicked fun. Thankful for volunteers who strive to improve the law and access to justice and who support The VBA Foundation. We're thankful for lawyers - members and not-yet-members (because, really, everyone should join) - for appreciating the value of extraordinary educational presentations and social opportunities on our enjoyment of this chosen profession. Read on!    
How's your VBA experience this year?
From Free Icons

The VBA last surveyed members in 2009. Has your experience improved? Please take a few minutes and let us know what you think. Your time is important, so our online survey on general membership is brief. Is continuing to improve the value of your VBA experience worth a bit of your time? We sure hope so! 
The top 4 VBA upcoming events

  1. The 22nd Annual Administrative Law Conference at the Virginia State Capitol. Highlights include a panel review of the impact of Virginia's new ethics laws and "Views from the Bench," featuring Court of Appeals judges Marla Graff Decker and Wesley G. Russell Jr.
Nov. 10, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.    |   6.0 MCLE Credits (anticipated)

2. The 24th Annual Capital Defense Workshop. Provides the specialized training required for lawyers willing to accept appointment in capital cases. 
Room discount available through TODAY only.
Nov. 17-18   |   Omni Richmond Hotel   |  
11.0 (2.0 Ethics) MCLE Credits (anticipated)


3. The VBA pairs up with other professional associations to provide Mix and Mingle networking opportunities for young lawyers with CPAs, bankers and insurance agents. The next event is in Williamsburg. Bring your business cards!
Nov. 10, 5:30-7:30 p.m.   |   Virginia Beer Company in Williamsburg
FREE. RSVP. Details.

4. A Legislative Breakfast in McLean features addresses from two lawyer-legislators and a VBA lobbyist. FREE. See details below.
Dec. 15, 8-9:30 a.m.   |   Hogan Lovells US LLP in McLean
RSVP by Dec. 8.    
Get informed about 2017 law proposals in McLean

Albo and Sullivan at 2015 NoVa Legislative Breakfast
Let us set the table for the 2017 General Assembly session! On Dec. 15 from 8-9:30 a.m. at Hogan Lovells US LLP in McLean, the VBA will present a Legislative Breakfast. Lawyer-legislators Dave Albo and "Rip" Sullivan will provide their thoughts not only on the upcoming short session, but also on Election Day results. VBA lobbyist Jeff Palmore of Reed Smith LLP will discuss the VBA's role in law reform and bills the VBA will support. Plan now to introduce a colleague to the VBA experience at this FREE event. RSVP by Dec. 8.     
Promoting laws that benefit Virginians

Virginia State Capitol PHOTO Marilyn Shaw 
Speaking of the VBA's 2017 legislative agenda, VBA sections and committees recommended legislative changes for the VBA to champion Sept. 29 at Legislative Day. Seventeen proposals made the list, including one each from the Business Law and Elder Law and Special Needs sections, and the Commission on the Needs of Children. Multiple proposals were endorsed from the Health Law and Wills, Trusts & Estate sections as well as the Boyd-Graves Conference. The 30-day 2017 General Assembly session convenes Jan. 11. Learn more about the VBA tradition of legislative initiatives on the Advocacy page of the website.    
Upcoming events

No background
Make sure the 127th Annual Meeting is on your radar - and on your calendar. We look forward to seeing you at the Williamsburg Lodge Jan. 19-21, 2017. Interested in becoming a sponsor, exhibitor or program advertiser? Act now for the biggest bang for your investment. See the event webpage,, for links.
VBA on WCVE, WCNV and WMVE radio

VBA Summer Meeting 2016. Photo by Marilyn Shaw

The VBA Summer Meeting program "The End of Greatness? The Future of the American Presidency" aired on some Virginia public radio stations Oct. 23. As has been the case with several previous VBA debates, WCVE and its Ideastations colleagues WCNV and WMVE, broadcast the presentation during the WCVE Forum. The forum audiences average 3,000 to 5,000 listeners. The program, featuring author Aaron David Miller, was sponsored by the Committee on Special Issues of National & State Importance.
Fall conference performance excels in 2016

2016-15 VBA Conference Comparison chart 
Fall conferences so far in 2016 attracted 687 registrants. That's 137 more than in 2015 and 162 more than in 2014. Plus this year saw a first-time White Collar Criminal Law Forum with 60 attendees. VBA sections and divisions, and the affiliated Boyd-Graves Conference, plan and organize these conferences for members,  nonmembers and invitees. 

Have you attended a fall CLE conference? Be sure to find the email that invited you to evaluate your experience. Your input does makes a difference.      
Know someone who would be an asset to the VBA?

2016 14 for 12 image vertical 
Share this email and tell them this secret: New or reactivating judges, lawyers and law professors can get 14 months of VBA benefits for the price of 12. How? By applying for 2017 membership this month. In exchange, we'll give the new member November and December 2016 VBA benefits for free!

Don't forget that your 2017 renewal will soon be due

A new VBA membership year begins Jan. 1. Renewing your dues and section memberships online is easy. Plus, you can update your profile information in a snap. Just sign in. (Need a bit more guidance? We've got you covered!)

Insurance corner

Virginia Barristers Alliance Inc. logoDid you know that fixed annuities typically have higher interest rates than Certificates of Deposit, known as CDs? Fixed annuities have no ongoing expenses or upfront fees, and offer tax deferral on the interest earned. In today's low-interest-rate environment, have you compared fixed annuities to the interest rates on your CDs?

Call 1-800-358-7987 or contact Virginia Barristers Alliance Inc. (VBAI) today to start a discussion about this product. VBAI has access to multiple fixed annuities with competitive interest rates.
What does 100 percent look like?

100 percent of UR 1Ls join VBA
Photo by Chris Ijams

The executive board of the VBA Law School Council at the University of Richmond successfully signed up every student of the incoming 1L class for VBA membership. They report: "This is just one of many feats demonstrating our school's strong commitment and dedication to attracting young lawyers with a propensity for continuing their legal work in Virginia." The council's executive board at the T.C. Williams School of Law consists of Callaghan Guy and Madelaine Kramer. 
Join our foundation donor list

Your support of The Virginia Bar Association Foundation means so much. It shows your dedication to the legal profession and contributes to extending the mission of the VBA. Contributions received by Thanksgiving will appear in the winter 2016-2017 issue of the VBA Journal. In addition they appear on the foundation page on the VBA website.
Member news

Life Member John Oakey honored by GRBF
Life Member John M. Oakey Jr.  (right) received the Benjamin R. Lacy, IV Volunteer of the Year Award from the Greater Richmond Bar Foundation. Oakey became a partner with McGuireWoods LLP in 1969. Since retiring in 1999, he has assisted hundreds of low-income families, military veterans and nonprofit organizations with free legal service. In 2010, the VBA honored Oakey with its Roger D. Groot Pro Bono Publico Service Award. Several of the nonprofits Oakey has served through the Pro Bono Clearinghouse nominated him for this year's Lacy award, the foundation said.

J. Rudy Austin, W. David Paxton and S.D. Roberts Moore were recognized as Local Litigation Stars in the 10th edition of Benchmark Litigation. This is the fourth consecutive year for these partners at Roanoke-based Gentry Locke to receive the honor. According to Gentry Locke, rankings are determined through extensive research and interviews with litigators and their clients. "Stars" are those recommended consistently as reputable and effective litigators by clients and peers. Austin was recognized for general commercial and insurance practices. The guide recognized Paxton for those two specialties and labor and employment work. Moore's practices in labor and employment and product liability were specified. Austin and Moore are VBA Life Members. Paxton has been a VBA member since 1983.

Law School represented on BoG
A. Benjamin Spencer, the law school representative on the VBA Board of Governors, is a new author in the multivolume reference book series Federal Practice and Procedure. The University of Virginia School of Law announced that Spencer is updating the civil rules of procedure covered in Vols. 5, 5A, 5B, and 5C of the Wright and Miller book series. He published his first supplement to volume 5A this year. A new edition will carry his name in 2018.

Mary C. Horner joins MercerTrigiani
Mary C. Horner has joined the Alexandria law firm of MercerTrigiani as an associate. She will be advising community associations on legal matters and providing litigation support. The 2015 graduate of the University of Richmond School of Law previously served as a judicial law clerk for Alexandria Circuit Court.

The Harrisonburg law firm Hoover Penrod PLC received this year's Lewis F. Powell Jr. Pro Bono Award from the Special Committee on Access to Legal Services of the Virginia State Bar.
The nomination letter, submitted by John Whitfield and Molly Bell of Blue Ridge Legal Services Inc., singled out Lawrence Hoover Jr., who helped form the agency in 1977. Several of the firm's 11 attorneys are VBA members. Every lawyer assists with pro bono cases for Blue Ridge Legal Services. They have provided more than $820,000 in legal services over 25 years, Virginia Lawyers Weekly reported.

Oct 2016 Virginia Lawyer
Cyril F. Coombs appears on the cover of the October issue of Virginia Lawyer, the Virginia State Bar magazine. The cover article, "Changing Lives with Pro Bono," is based on a speech Coombs gave at the VBA-organized Chief Justice's Pro Bono Summit in April.

YLD Chair-elect Jeremy S. Williams and Patice Holland, chair of the Transportation Law Section, are among the inaugural Class of 2016 Up & Coming Lawyers. Virginia Lawyers Weekly selected 14 attorneys in a new program that recognizes lawyers making their mark within their first 10 years of practice. Other honorees who are VBA members are Alyssa C. Embree, Ryan A. Glasgow, Lisa J. Hedrick, Laura Golden Liff and Edward A. Mullen.
Say hello to the 24 new or reactivating members who joined the VBA in October.
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