Welcome to The Virginia Bar Association
• 124th VBA Annual Meeting in collaboration with the ODBA, Jan. 23-25, Williamsburg •
• See the VBA calendar for all events • Take a look at our Facebook photo albums •
• Planning is under way for 2014 legislative initiatives •
• The winter VBA Journal comes out later this month. The fall VBA Journal remains online. •
• Gifts to The VBA Foundation by Thanksgiving will appear in the winter VBA Journal •
The VBA Voice e-newsletter
Dec. 9 -- A joyful noise
Missed an issue? No problem. Go to the archives.
The U.S. Senate on Dec. 10 voted to confirm Patricia Millett to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. Millett is a member of the VBA Appellate Practice Section Council. Hers was the first judicial confirmation since a rules change meant to streamline nominations. The vacancy has been open since 2005. Millett has argued 32 times before the U.S. Supreme Court, the second most for a woman advocate, the Blog of LegalTimes reported.
The names of more than 3,300 attorneys were submitted in 16 categories for the annual Virginia Business magazine list of lawyers rates tops by their peers. This year's Legal Elite, published in the December issue on newsstands now, lists 868 attorneys. Nearly two-thirds of them -- 550+ -- are VBA members.
The magazine profiles numerous attorneys, including VBA members Thomas W. Greeson in Health Law, Marshall M. Curtis in Intellectual Property, and Gretchen M. Ostroff in Young Lawyers. Categories in which VBA members make up more than 66 percent of the Legal Elite include Labor and Employment, Construction, Real Estate and Land Use, and Business Law.
Virginia Business began collaborating with the VBA in selecting categories for the Legal Elite in 2000. The VBA is not involved in the balloting.
In 2012, the General Assembly ordered a study to measure and compare the workload of Virginia judges at all court levels. The Virginia Judicial Workload Assessment Report was posted by the Supreme Court of Virginia on Nov. 15. The National Center for State Courts performed the study, which also assessed the optimum distribution of judicial positions throughout the commonwealth.
The VBA, which alongside eight statewide bars is urging legislators and the executive branch to fully fund and fill judicial vacancies, will closely follow matters included in the report.
We are interested in hearing your feedback on the report. Email those comments to Executive Director Yvonne C. McGhee.
Virginia Living magazine interviewed VBA officials and affiliated groups for the article "Honor & Compassion" about the State of Law in Virginia. The subhead calls Virginia's state bar associations "the standard bearers for professionalism in the practice of law." Sandra Shelley wrote the article for the magazine's December 2013 issue, which hit newsstands on Nov. 8. Start reading on page 65. Or start on page 59 with a profile of Chief Justice Cynthia D. Kinser.
Through participation in bar associations, Virginia lawyers have exerted a profound influence on the development of Virginia's legal system. The exhibit "The Bar at Work: 125 Years of Building the Legal Profession in Virginia, 1888-2013" commemorates the VBA's 125th anniversary and the VSB's 75th. Created by the Supreme Court of Virginia Historical Advisory Committee and the Virginia State Law Library, the exhibit is on display on the third floor of the building housing the Supreme Court of Virginia. Take a peek via this PDF. Organizers expect the presentation to remain on display through August 2014.
The VBA and eight other statewide bar associations have united to seek the funding and filling of all judicial vacancies in Virginia. The result is a resolution (PDF) signed by all nine bar groups. In late October, the VBA sent a letter (PDF) to members and candidates of the legislative and executive branches of government seeking their support for this initiative. We encourage members' individual efforts to build community backing for the goal of filling all existing and anticipated vacancies in the judiciary. VBA President Tom Bagby wrote about the subject in his Nov. 1 In A VBA Minute message.
Thirty Leaders in the Law recognized by Virginia Lawyers Weekly chose John B. McCammon of The McCammon Group for top honors in the class of 2013. The annual awards reception for legal professionals who make significant contributions to the practice of law was held in Richmond on Oct. 17. A VBA member since 1977, McCammon has served in the leadership of the Joint ADR Committee of the VBA and VSB, and has appeared as a presenter at VBA-sponsored events.
James V. Meath, chairman of the board at Williams Mullen in Richmond and the 2005 VBA president, in October started a one-year term as president of the Virginia Law Foundation. He succeeds Manuel A. Capsalis in the role at the philanthropic organization that promotes law-related education and access to justice. The Virginia Law Foundation has provided more than $23 million in support of the Rule of Law Project initiated at the VBA, the Court Appointed Special Advocates program, Lawyers Helping Lawyers and other projects. Meath is a Fellow of the Virginia Law Foundation, which recently named Raymond M. White, the executive director of Virginia CLE, as its executive director. Read the Richmond Times-Dispatch article about plans for Meath's term.
Marla Graff Decker, Virginia's secretary of public safety under Gov. Bob McDonnell, has been named to the Virginia Court of Appeals. When she joins the court in November, she will succeed Judge Larry Elder, who is retiring. Before joining McDonnell's Cabinet in 2010, Decker worked in the state attorney general's office for more than 25 years. Read the governor's news release on Decker's appointment.
July 5, 2013, marks the founding of what has become The Virginia Bar Association. The Richmond bar led the effort 125 years ago to create a statewide group for lawyers. Read the VBA news release. Read VBA President Tom Bagby's In A VBA Minute on the topic.
VBA Online CLE: It’s to your credit
VBA Online CLE marries the strength of the Association’s educational programming, coordinated by VBA sections, with today’s on-demand world. The result is our latest benefit: recorded CLE at member-discounted pricing. Choose from a growing list of video or podcast presentations and earn mandatory CLE starting at $50 for 1.5 credit hours. Read more … Browse the catalog and make a purchase.
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7th Annual Legal Food Frenzy
April 1-12, 2013
This spring, 183 law firms, legal departments, government offices, and law schools across Virginia joined together to raise almost 1.5 million pounds of food for Virginia's hungry.
This year's goal was to push the total amount of food raised over the seven years of the statewide event to the equivalent of 10 million pounds of food.
The contest ended with a cumulative total of 10,017,511 pounds. The Legal Food Frenzy is a collaborative efforts of the VBA Young Lawyers Division, the attorney general's office and the Federation of Virginia Food Banks.
2013 Winners | 2012 Winners
2013 Awards reception photos
Some 2013 contest photos
Check out our programs!
- 124th VBA Annual Meeting in collaboration with the ODBA, Jan. 23-25, 2014, Williamsburg
- Eighth Annual Legal Food Frenzy, March 31-April 11, 2014, Statewide
- Chief Justice's Pro Bono Summit, sponsored by the VBA, April 2, 2014, Richmond
- 17th Annual Bankruptcy Law Conference, May 9-10, 2014, Duck, N.C.
- VBA YLD Spring Executive Council Meeting, May 16-17, 2014, Duck, N.C.
- 124th VBA Summer Meeting, July 24-27, 2014, White Sulphur Springs, W.Va.
- Boyd-Graves Conference (invitation only), Oct. 24-25, 2014
Selected VBA Projects
The Virginia Bar Association is the independent voice of the Virginia lawyer, advancing the highest ideals of the profession through advocacy and volunteer service.