Verdict - Summer 2013 - (Page 7)

president’s message GTLA has Many Success Stories, but There is Still Much Work to Do BY BUCK ROGERS E ach year, a new president is elected to lead our organization and do what is best for the advancement of our collective cause. However, one year seems a short timeframe within which to affect much lasting change. A wise former president of GTLA – and still current leader – advised me to “pick one thing to focus on” and not be distracted by trying to do too much. This, however, is difficult advice to follow, as this organization has accomplished, and continues to accomplish, much. Our Continuing Legal Education programs are first-class, well-attended and feature many diverse practice areas, expert speakers and interesting topics. The Amicus Committee is striving to increase the volume of briefs submitted, with respect to a broader range of issues faced by our members. And our Communications and Public Relations Committees have spearheaded several successful initiatives this year, including a full-scale media outreach program. So, how can you help make GTLA better? That’s easy. Recruit new members. We need to bring more attorneys into our fold and help them become better lawyers. In the legislative arena, our 236 Program, with the support of Past President Geoff Pope, is successfully building more lasting relationships with State Senators and Representatives; and with 25 active Local TLA’s across the state, our Grassroots Initiative is helping to foster those relationships through meetings between legislators and local lawyers. Our Civil Justice PAC and Directed Giving Program also continue to support those candidates who are defenders of the Civil Justice System. Thus, we are cultivating working relationships that encourage open communication during the legislative session and produce results on behalf of our clients. While each president faces the constant threat of possible attacks on the Civil Justice System, we cannot be paralyzed by our fear. We must prepare and work throughout the year to counter any measures that may restrict access to justice. We will, of course, continue to work on all of our efforts, but if you feel that there is something specific that we are missing, I hope you will reach out to your GTLA staff and leadership. Good lawyers make good law and GTLA makes lawyers better. Past President Robin Clark’s mantra is “a rising tide lifts all boats.” In that light, it is undeniable that our members benefit from each other. Other state Trial Lawyer organizations envy our unity and willingness to help each other, and strive to mirror our efforts. We must remember, though, that there is always room for improvement. The listserv, for instance, is a tremendous resource; however, we recently initiated a regulatory committee to ensure that it remains a useful forum for the exchange of information and helpful advice. The point is that usually our members are doing it right, and they do so with the aid and benefit of our entire organization’s support as they navigate the obstacles to justice. When coupled with sound advice on the listserv, CLE’s, amicus support, shared briefs and so much more, the advantages offered to GTLA members are truly second-to-none. So, how can you help make GTLA better? That’s easy. Recruit new members. We need to bring more attorneys into our fold and help them become better lawyers. Butler, Wooten & Fryhofer recently sponsored 10 new members who attended the State Bar’s Transition Into Law Practice Program (TILPP) to join GTLA. In that same vein, each of you could encourage a practicing attorney who is not yet a GTLA member to join our Association. You could set aside part of a fee to sponsor a lawyer who cannot currently afford to join. We all know lawyers who would benefit tremendously from being a part of GTLA. If each member who reads this (10 or so is my guess) would reach out to a non-member colleague, then we would have 10 new members. However, if all 2,000+ of us were to do so, we would double our collective voice and the strength of that voice. Don’t just encourage, don’t just tell them about it… get them to join. It’s really not much different than asking a client to sign a fee contract or asking a jury for justice. We do it each and every day in our profession. Story continues on page 9 Summer 2013 7

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Verdict - Summer 2013

President’s Message
A Primer on Birth Injury Cases and How to Keep Them “Simple” for the Jury
Online Research of Potential Jurors: A Survey of Resources and Ethical Boundaries
Jury Selection and The Millennials
Confessions of a Trial Lawyer Geek: Great iPad Apps for Trial
GTLA Out & About
Ten Ways to Protect Clients Through Workers’ Compensation Settlements
A Letter from Your Listserv Committee
Case Updates: What’s New?
Workers’ Comp: Recent Developments
Champion Members
Welcome New GTLA Members!
Court Reporters Marketplace
Notes: What’s New with GTLA Members

Verdict - Summer 2013