SIDESBAR WINTER 2021 - 29

MONTGOMERYBAR.ORG

SIDEBAR FEATURE

Delaware Valley Legal
Expo Goes Virtual
An Attendee's Perspective
By Adam D. Zucker, Esq.

I

have to admit that I was incredibly
skeptical about attending this year's legal
Expo in a virtual format. Having attended
all but perhaps one Legal Expo since they
started, I came to rely on them as a good
opportunity to socialize with my colleagues at the MBA, meet new
vendors and reestablish connections with older ones. I found a
number of our firm's vendors through attendance at the legal Expo.
Most firms and attorneys have become very familiar with
virtual formats and connectivity since the onset of the COVID
pandemic in April of 2020. At first while it might not seem
optimal to engage with a vendor over a video conferencing format,
when we think about it, as attorneys many of us conducted our
initial consultation with clients over video conferencing. The
clients then make a decision whether to move forward with
retaining us for legal services all through video conferencing
technologies such as Zoom, RingCentral and Webex. So why
not interact with a potential vendor of legal services or products
the same way that our clients interact with us for an initial
consultation? As one who avoids shopping malls like the plague, I
am generally happy to purchase products online with vendors such
as Amazon, Staples and others.

The Legal Expo was actually quite a creative combination
of in-person shopping and online shopping with vendors. The
Expo format was set up so that one could visit different vendor
booths by scrolling through the list that linked with the MBA
website. Once you found a vendor you wanted to talk to, you
simply entered your name and email then clicked and entered
the virtual booth where you were able to communicate with a
live representative - an enhancement from our normal online
shopping experiences. There is no doubt that in-person face-toface contact with vendors is preferable, but then again it's also
preferable not to live in a world with COVID-19. If anything,
the pandemic has shown us that we can be creative and resilient
and use technology more than we ever thought we could. It is
amazing how even the technophobic among us can learn to swim
in the technology sea when we are forced to either sink or swim.
As I pointed out to my partner, perhaps one of the great benefits
of a virtual Expo was the fact that I was not tempted to add to my
already ample waistline by sampling the various snacks and candies
which are always offered at the booths during a live Expo. With
any luck we will have that opportunity next year with even more
luck I'll have the willpower to leave the snickers bar in the big
bowl.

SIDEBAR FEATURE

Light the Courthouse

By Joel B. Bernbaum, Esq.

O

n Monday evening, October 26th, the Montgomery Bar Association sponsored our
annual " Light the Courthouse " event to raise the awareness of Domestic Violence.
With the event being virtual this year, we were able to host more attendees than
ever before. We were honored to welcome: Dr. Valerie Arkoosh, Chair, Montgomery County
Board of Commissioners; Judge Melissa S. Sterling; Maria Macaluso, Executive Director, The
Women's Center of Montgomery County; Mary Onama, Executive Director, Victim Services
of Montgomery County; and Beth Sturman, Executive Director, Laurel House.
MBA President Patrick J. Kurtas spoke of the need of our Bar Association to work closely
with the Court to ensure that Protection from Abuse (PFA) Orders and other emergency
hearings continue ceaselessly during such trying times. Our Prothonotary, Noah Marlier, also
was able to express his department's role in the processing of PFAs and emergency hearings/
orders.
In addition to over 50 MBA members, Philadelphia Bar Association Chancellor Hon.
Am. Michael Snyder (Ret.) and members of their Family Law Section also joined us. The
virtual event allowed for greater participation from attendees, who were able to share a dialog
about the problem of domestic violence with stakeholders and community leaders. We are
hopeful this event will expand to our adjoining counties next year and beyond.
WINTER 2021 29


http://www.montgomerybar.org

SIDESBAR WINTER 2021

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