May President's Message
|Hon. Linda S. Jamieson
I am most grateful for the privilege and honor you have bestowed upon me in electing me to serve as President of the Westchester County Bar Association for this next year.
I want to begin by thanking the Board of Directors of the Bar Association for the commitment, effort and leadership that they have demonstrated over the years, especially in the last year as I served as President-Elect.
I also want to thank the staff of the Bar Association for their devotion to our Association and their responsiveness to any requests that I have made for assistance.
I especially want to praise, thank and congratulate our past president, Richard Vecchio, and immediate past president, Stephanie Burns, for all of their hard work and dedication. Their efforts have enabled the Westchester County Bar Association to remain the great Association it has been for the 123 years since its creation and their tireless efforts have only bolstered our ability to implement all of the Board’s strategies and goals.
During Richard’s presidency, our new Executive Director, Isabel Dichiara, through her excellent managerial skills, has truly enhanced the ability of our Board to work effectively and efficiently. Additionally, our website underwent a metamorphosis, and the new site has made it nearly effortless for members to sign up for our CLEs and events.
Our new highly professional office space continues to be a great source of pride and remains, a terrific location for CLEs and Westchester County Bar Association Section and Committee meetings, providing a large conference room with free parking.
During the next year, I look forward to continuing to build upon the foundations Stephanie and Richard have laid for me to implement our newest program for community outreach, the Lawyer in the Classroom.
To further that particular initiative, the Association, with the assistance of volunteer attorneys and law students, will be piloting a program to 5th grade students in one elementary school in the White Plains City School District which will teach both the rights and responsibilities all of us have under our Constitution. In the future, we hope to be able to expand this program to all 5th grade students of the White Plains City School District.
We have continued with great success and enthusiasm on the part of our members to administer the Mock Trial Competition for high school students, with the regional championship held in the Supreme Court in the Richard J. Daronco Courthouse. I have had the honor of judging the final round and have found the quality of the students’ preparation and advocacy to be amazing and beyond their years.
In the next year, we are hoping to build upon the initiative that Administrative Judge Kathie Davidson and recently elected Supreme Court Justice David Everett have undertaken with regard to the Veteran’s Court and to expand upon that initiative, and an informal veteran’s group within the Courthouse that Judge Everett has put together, to develop programs for veterans throughout the County.
Although bar associations across the country suffer from declining membership numbers, our Association continues to remain strong in its membership. It is my hope to increase membership, most specifically, within our New Lawyers’ Section by getting the newly admitted attorneys involved from the start of their careers. Toward that end, I will continue to hold the monthly “Lunch with the Judges” with other members of the Judiciary participating as well as a way for attorneys, new and old, to meet with Judges in an informal setting and learn the benefits of collegiality and civility between and among members of the bench and bar, not just the preferred practices and Part Rules of those Judges.
Also, I look forward to coordinating a mentoring program with the Elisabeth Haub School of Law at Pace University for the school’s 1L students, thereby having those students connected to our Association and our members through membership from the very beginning of their legal education, with that connection to be deepened as their careers move forward.
While I am president, I am most hopeful that I will be able to forge an even stronger relationship between bench and bar so that attorneys, young and old, will be familiar with the Judges they appear before and the Judges will be familiar with those who appear before them. Please always feel free to contact me with any ideas, suggestions and challenges for our Association. I will continue to strive to work for and with our membership, and to make your experience as a Westchester County Bar Association member rewarding for you, your fellow colleagues and for the public.
I commit to each and all of you that I will carry out my oath of office to further our Association’s purposes of promoting the ends of justice, cultivating the science of jurisprudence, maintaining the availability of the law to all who seek redress, facilitating the administration of justice, elevating the standards of integrity, honor, competence and courtesy in our profession and to, with each one of you, being true to protecting the common good.
I look forward to serving you and hearing from you with your suggestions.
Thank you again for the wonderful privilege of being your President.
I can be reached by email at President@wcbany.org or by telephone at the WCBA offices, 914-761-3707.