Enews: April 2019 (Volume 15, Issue 4)

In this Issue…

– Final 2019 Legislative Review

– 2019 State Bar of Georgia Election: March 25 – April 26

– Georgia Legal Food Frenzy: Register Now!

– Georgia Bar Journal: April 2019

– 2019 Annual Meeting: Register Now

– Support Georgia Legal Services Program

– 2019-20 State Bar Committee Appointments

– Calling All Lawyers and Judges to Athens!

– Local and Voluntary Bar Activities Awards

– 2019 Commitment to Equality Awards

– Wellness Corner

– Free Fastcase Research Offered Through the State Bar

April 24, 2019


The 2019 legislative session of the Georgia General Assembly ended April 2. Please visit the Legislative Program page [ www.gabar.org ] for a complete summary of Bar proposals and other legislative items of interest, including the final legislative update.


We encourage you to vote in the State Bar of Georgia annual election. Ballots were mailed March 25 to those of you who did not opt in to paperless voting. To vote online, go to www.gabar.org [ www.gabar.org ] and log in with your State Bar username and password. Once logged in, click on the “Vote” button. On the following screen click on “Go To Ballot” and you will begin the voting process. The deadline for casting a ballot is April 26 at 11:59 p.m. EDT. Candidate information is included on the ballot for contested races or may be viewed on the website.

If you need assistance with logging in to your member account, please contact the Membership Department at membership@gabar.org [ mailto:membership@gabar.org ] or 404-527-8777. For any other voting-related issues (e.g., did not receive your ballot, difficulty with your ballot, incorrect ballot, etc.) please contact Survey & Ballot Systems by email at support@directvote.net [ mailto:support@directvote.net ] or call 866-909-3549.


The Georgia Legal Food Frenzy is a two-week food and fund drive competition done in partnership with the Georgia Attorney General, the State Bar and YLD, and the Georgia Food Bank Association. The competition is open to everyone in the legal community to see which law firm, legal organization and corporate/in-house counsel can have the biggest impact on hunger. Everything you raise stays local and benefits the regional food bank that serves your community.

The Legal Food Frenzy competition will run from April 22 to May 3. Learn more and register your firm, legal organization, in-house counsel or court at galegalfoodfrenzy.org [ galegalfoodfrenzy.org ] .


The April 2019 issue of the Georgia Bar Journal is available online. Some of the highlights include:

– From the President: “The Time is Right” [ digitaleditions.walsworthprintgroup.com ] by Hon. Kenneth B. Hodges III

– From the YLD President: “Leadership Academy Enhances Young Lawyers’ Skills and Networks” [ digitaleditions.walsworthprintgroup.com ] by Hon. Rizza P. O’Connor

– From the Executive Director: “Judge John Allen: An Officer and a Gentleman” [ digitaleditions.walsworthprintgroup.com ] by Jeff Davis

– “The Peculiarities of Georgia Insurance Law” [ digitaleditions.walsworthprintgroup.com ] by J. Stephen Berry

Visit the website [ www.gabar.org ] to start browsing the newest issue of the Georgia Bar Journal .


The 2019 State Bar of Georgia Annual Meeting will be held June 6-9 at the Ritz-Carlton Orlando, Grande Lakes in Orlando, Florida. The early bird and hotel cut-off date is May 10, and the registration cut-off date is May 24.

All hotel reservations must be made by Friday, May 10, as rooms will be on a space and rate availability basis after this date. Due to the location of this meeting, we fully expect to fill all our room blocks prior to the cut-off date. Please make your reservations as soon as possible.

For more information about hotel accommodations and to register, please visit the website [ www.gabar.org ] . If you have any questions, please contact Michelle Garner, director of meetings, at michelleg@gabar.org [ mailto:michelleg@gabar.org ] or 404-527-8790.


Please add your gift to the Georgia Legal Services Program (GLSP) on your 2019-20 State Bar License Fee and Assessment Notice, which is available to pay online now at www.gabar.org [ www.gabar.org ] . Or you can give on Line E of your paper notice, which will be mailed May 17. State Bar members were the moving force in creating Georgia Legal Services in 1971 to provide access to justice and opportunities out of poverty for people with low incomes. Nearly 2.5 million Georgians in poverty reside in GLSP’s territory of 154 counties outside metro-Atlanta. Many poor people in rural Georgia have no other way to find the legal help they need. GLSP’s civil legal services are provided free of charge to clients. Your gift makes a difference. Thank you for your support!


Are you interested in becoming more involved with your State Bar? State Bar committees are where the Bar’s work gets done. That work is possible only with the commitment of volunteer lawyers like you. As he sets out to make committee appointments, incoming President Darrell Sutton would like your input. If there’s a committee (or several) on which you would like to serve, please email sharonb@gabar.org [ mailto:sharonb@gabar.org ] with a list of your committee preferences and your qualifications or interest in each. A list of committees and their descriptions can be found here [ www.gabar.org ] .


Atlanta might be the capital of Georgia, but Athens is its Classic City. The YLD and State Bar are proud to be hosting the 2019 National High School Mock Trial Championship May 17-18 in the Classic City, and we want you to be a part of it! Forty-six teams representing schools across the United States, the territory of Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands and South Korea will converge on Athens for the week as they compete to crown the 2019 National Champion. We have a great week planned for the teams but need your help for the competition, both in person on judging panels, and for fundraising support. Competition rounds are Friday and Saturday, with two rounds each day. Please visit the Athens2019 website [ athens2019.nhsmtc.org ] for more information on volunteering and donating.


In order to encourage and support local and voluntary bars and their service programs, to promote activities that relate to the improvement of the administration of justice, the objectives of the State Bar of Georgia and the image of lawyers, the State Bar sponsors an awards program each year to recognize excellence in local and voluntary bar associations. Administered by the Local and Voluntary Bars Committee, awards are presented to winners at the State Bar’s Annual Meeting. The submission deadline is Friday, May 3, so now is the perfect time to begin compiling photos, news clippings, programs, flyers, etc., for scrapbooks and exhibits.

Click here [ www.gabar.org ] for more information regarding the guidelines and submission process. Questions? Contact Ashley Stollar at 404-527-8792 or ashleys@gabar.org [ mailto:ashleys@gabar.org ] .


The Committee to Promote Inclusion in the Profession will present the 2019 Commitment to Equality Awards on Thursday, May 23, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., at the Georgia State University College of Law. The 2019 award recipients are:

Randolph Thrower Lifetime Achievement Award

– Phyllis J. Holmen, Former Executive Director, Georgia Legal Services Program

One to Watch Award

– Pamela Peynado Stewart, Attorney/Partner, Lee & Peynado Immigration Law Group

Commitment to Equality Award

– Hon. Kimberly M. Esmond Adams, Judge, Fulton County Superior Court

– Anthony Baldwin, Adjunct Professor, Mercer University Walter F. George School of Law

– Ana Maria Martinez, Staff Attorney, DeKalb County State Court

– Jamala S. McFadden, Attorney/Partner, McFadden Davis LLC

– Melford W. Walker Jr., Vice President and Senior Counsel, Wells Fargo & Company

– Gwendolyn Fortson Waring, Attorney, Waring Law Firm

Online registration is available on the website [ www.gabar.org ] .


Next month is Mental Health Awareness Month [ www.mentalhealthamerica.net ] , which strives to reduce the stigma about mental illness and educate the public about mental health. Although the mind is the most important asset for every attorney, the pressures of legal practice can take a significant toll on our mental well-being, leading to higher levels of anxiety, alcohol abuse and depression among lawyers [ journals.lww.com ] than other professionals. To help with that, the State Bar provides a variety of mental health resources and services, such as practical articles and videos [ gabar.org ] , professional counseling services [ sbog.info ] and peer-to-peer support. Visit Lawyers Living Well [ www.gabar.org ] to learn more and explore all available resources.


Free online legal research is available to all Bar members. Learn how to effectively use and navigate Fastcase. To register for a 1-hour or 3-hour CLE at one of the three State Bar locations or to sign up for a webinar hosted by Fastcase, please visit the website [ www.gabar.org ] .

State Bar of Georgia