Maryland Bar Bulletin
Publications : Bar Bulletin : September 2006

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  SECTION SPOTLIGHT  

MSBA Young Lawyers Do It Their Way

MSBA Section of Young Lawyers

No. of Members
5,000+

Founded
November 1, 1968

Officers
Chair: Hughie Hunt
Chair-Elect: Michael Siri
Treasurer: Tamara Goorevitz
Secretary: Michelle Stawinski
Member-at-Large: Marnell Cooper

Newsletter
The Advocate

MICPEL Programs
TBA
 

Throughout history, younger generations have been at the forefront of questioning society's established practices and subsequently adapting the system to a new era. In keeping with that progressive mind set, the Young Lawyers Section of the Maryland State Bar Association (MSBA) has adapted its own procedures and methods in conducting business.

This year, the Section held its annual orientation meeting in Bowie, Maryland, with the hope of getting everyone "on the same page," according to Section Chair Hughie Hunt. But the event was not held at the Comfort Inn's conference center or even the private dining room at T.G.I. Friday's. Rather, the chairs of the Section's sub-committees gathered on Saturday, August 26, ready to enjoy the 80-degree weather and engage in the strategic combat of paintball, a warfare-type game in which participants fire paint pellets at one another from their CO2-powered rifles with the goal of capturing the other team's flag.

"It was out of the ordinary. . . but a fun experience," laughs Hunt. "Everyone had a good time."

After cleaning up, the 21 participants sat down to discuss the Section's plans for the upcoming year, including a general outline of goals and events. The main point of conversation was the advertising procedures for this year's American Bar Association (ABA)'s Young Lawyers Division (YLD) Conference, which the spirited Section will host October 19-21 at the Baltimore Convention Center.

"It's a real honor to host," Hunt says of the conference that hasn't been to Charm City since 1996. "It's like getting the Olympics. We had to sell Baltimore to the ABA-YLD Chair, Jay Ray."

One of the selling points was the accessibility of Baltimore's Inner Harbor. It is a short walk from the Marriot Waterfront Hotel – the main accommodations for partakers in the free conference – to the plethora of social events that are scattered throughout downtown. Events include the welcome reception at the Havana Club, the Section Council Dinner at the Sports Legends Museum, the Friday lunch at the Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History and Culture and the evening social at the B&O Railroad Museum.

Baltimore's proximity to Washington, D.C., Philadelphia and other major areas also contributed to the Young Lawyer Section receiving the bid to host.

"Baltimore is a great gathering place," notes Ruth Ann-Bennett, who during her tenure as Section Chair last year spearheaded the Section's efforts to land the conference. "It's a very relaxed atmosphere to meet people from across the country."

That relaxed atmosphere is by now second nature to the members of MSBA's largest Section, primarily due to the fact that their mission for years has been an easygoing tone and ample networking opportunities.

The key to professional success, Hunt learned early in life, is networking, and that mindset stayed with him throughout his tenure at George Washington University, where he decided to distinguished himself from his colleagues through networking. There is, after all, an intangible quality in the working world to being not only smart but also recognizable, approachable and personable.

"The Young Lawyers Section is really about forming relationships within the bar," adds Hunt. "Through the course of the year, [we] have so many meetings that you catch up with everybody. [The events make] it easier to talk to folks for help in your practice-life."

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Publications : Bar Bulletin: September 2006

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