first_imgBriefs Stetson University College of Law recently honored the commitment and dedication of three lawyers with its newly established Stetson University Distinguished Service Awards.The inaugural recipients include:• Leo J. Govoni, a member of the Stetson University College of Law Board of Overseers and an advocate for America’s elderly.• Chris W. Altenbernd, chief judge of Florida’s Second District Court of Appeal.• Wm. Reece Smith, Jr., a distinguished professorial lecturer at Stetson.“This award seeks to show our appreciation to those who did not graduate from Stetson, but who have helped shape our institution,” said Stetson Law Dean Darby Dickerson.“The three individuals we honor this year have made a tremendous impact at Stetson. Stetson is able to offer the highest quality of legal education because of the work of many individuals who share their intellect, integrity, time, and other resources.”The awards will be presented annually to one or more individuals who are not alumni of Stetson University College of Law, but who have made significant, meritorious, and continuing contributions that have benefited the school.Several awards honoring Stetson alumni also were presented this year:• Edwin T. “Eddie” Mulock received the Ben C. Willard Award for his distinguished humanitarian achievements.• Judge Kenneth A. Marra received the Distinguished Alumnus Award for service to humanity and proven dedication.• Gary R. Trombley received the Paul M. May Meritorious Service Award in recognition of his continued support of the College of Law through contributions of time and gifts.• Karen A. Williams and Paul A. Turk, Jr., each received Outstanding Alumni Representative Awards for dedication and service to the Stetson Lawyers Association and encouraging alumni involvement in local activities.• Robert J. Sniffen was recognized with the President’s Award for his year-long service as president of the Stetson Lawyers Association. U.S. 11th Circuit Court seeks rules amendment comments Animal Law Committee in the works The Manatee County Bar Association recently recognized two members for their record of service to the community.David W. Wilcox received the Lifetime Achievement Award and Melton R. Little received the Community Service Leader Award. The purpose of the awards is to highlight association members who provide service to the community through participation in organizations and activities beyond the Bar and mandatory pro bono legal services.Wilcox earned the Lifetime Achievement Award for service that included serving as past president of the Kiwanis Club of Bradenton, chair of the sporting clays event for the United Way of Manatee County, past president and general chairman of the DeSoto Celebration and the DeSoto Historical Foundation, a charter member of the Manatee Chamber of Commerce Leadership Manatee program, and a founding member of the political action committee formerly known as Take Back Bradenton.Little earned the Community Service Award by serving the Manatee County Boys and Girls Clubs in numerous roles including corporate board president and received both the Man & Youth Award and the National Service Medallion from the Boys & Girls Clubs of America. His other community associations include involvement with the Manatee Chamber of Commerce, Leadership Manatee, and the Economic Development Council, service as a member of the board for the Manatee Opportunity Council, vice chairman of Keep Manatee Beautiful, and as a coach of youth soccer leagues.Stetson passes out awards The Bar’s Young Lawyers Division is now accepting nominations for its YLD Pro Bono Award.The Florida Bar YLD Pro Bono Award recognizes public service or legal aid performed by a young lawyer (under the age of 36 or one who has not practiced for more than five years in any jurisdiction) who provides outstanding contributions to those in need of free legal services.The purpose of this award is to encourage more Florida young lawyers to freely contribute their time and expertise in providing legal services to people in their community who cannot otherwise afford those services. In some instances, this will include legal services to charitable organizations which serve the poor. The award is intended to provide recognition to young lawyers who have made an outstanding contribution in this area. The emphasis of these awards is on legal services to the poor.Nomination forms may be found on the YLD Web site at and nominations must be submitted on or before October 15 to The Florida Bar, Austin Newberry, Young Lawyers Division Program Administrator, 651 E. Jefferson Street, Tallahassee 32399-2300.Bar Professionalism Committee accepting awards nominations The Florida Bar Standing Committee on Professionalism is seeking applications for two awards it presents each year at the Bar’s Annual Meeting — the William H. Hoeveler Judicial Award and the Professionalism Award.The deadline for entries for both awards is December 1.The William H. Hoeveler Judicial Award is bestowed upon a judge “who best exemplifies strength of character, service, and competence as a jurist, lawyer, and public servant.”Nominees should also “have communicated their pledge to the ideals of justice and diligence in inspiring others to the mission of professionalism.”The 12th annual Florida Bar Professionalism Award is open to bar associations, judicial organizations, or law school projects aimed at enhancing professionalism among lawyers. The purpose of the award is to promote the ideals and goals of professionalism, to reward programs that foster and promote professionalism, and create a collection point for programs around the state so those programs can be shared with others. A cash award of $1,000 will be presented to the winner at the Bar’s Annual Meeting.Applications and guidelines for both awards are available on the Bar’s Web site, For the Hoeveler award, click “Professionalism” in the blue menu bar. A link to the nomination form can be found at the bottom of the page. For the Professionalism Award, click “Committee Projects.”For more information, or to request copies of the applications, contact Paula Stephenson at the Center for Professionalism, 651 E. Jefferson St., Tallahassee 32399-2300, telephone (850) 561-5743, e-mail The Association of Bankruptcy Judicial Assistants set its 2004 Bankruptcy Training Conference Seminar and Examination for October 9-10 in Nashville, Tennessee, and on October 11 will present an advanced bankruptcy seminar at the same location.The ABJA is a national organization chartered in 1989 and is open to secretaries/judicial assistants holding appointments by U.S. bankruptcy judges. One of the primary objectives of the organization is to develop educational programs for its members and the bankruptcy legal community.The ABJA Bankruptcy Certification Program, which begins at 8 a.m. at the Downtown Doubletree Hotel on October 9, is designed to enable secretaries/assistants, paralegals, and individuals in the legal profession to keep pace with new developments and will be an effective quality improvement mechanism for employers.“Bankruptcy law has developed into a very sophisticated and technical area of legal expertise,” said ABJA’s Martie Kantor. “It is imperative that as secretaries, legal assistants, and paralegals, we also develop expertise in this highly specialized area of the law.”The registration fee for the two-day program is $150, and includes break refreshments on Saturday and Sunday, lunch on Sunday, a study guide and all program materials, including a sample exam. The certified bankruptcy assistant exam fee is $99.The fee for the Advanced Bankruptcy Seminar on October 11 is $75, and includes refreshments and conference materials.For more information on both events — which have registration deadlines of September 6 — visit www.abja or contact Kantor at (850) 942-8943 or e-mail Martie_Kantor@ Challenge For Children makes gains The Florida Supreme Court’s Committee on Standard Jury Instructions in Civil Cases will have up to seven vacancies at the end of 2004.Any lawyer licensed to practice law in Florida and any member of the Florida judiciary may apply for appointment.An application form may be obtained from Gerry Rose, The Florida Bar, 651 E. Jefferson Street, Tallahassee 32399-2300; telephone: (850) 561-5706; fax: (850) 561-5817; e-mail: are to be submitted by September 15.Nominees sought for young lawyers pro bono awardscenter_img The Paralegal Association of Florida, Inc., will hold its 28th Annual Seminar and Membership Meeting at the Harbor Beach Marriott Resort & Spa in Ft. Lauderdale, September 17-18.The general session and double-track seminars including “Ethics,” presented by Scott A. Mager; “Sexual Harrassment,” presented by Kacy Margaret Marshall; “Arbitration,” presented by Rhonda Hollander; “Client Relations,” presented by Frank Rodriguez; “Guardianships Restricted Depositories,” presented by Blake Smith, director of Wachovia Bank; “Family Law,” presented by Robert Shalhoub; “Employment Law,” presented by Jose Diaz; “Civil Liberties,” presented by John Leon; “Arbitration-Securities,” presented by Rose Chindler; and “Cyber Crime,” presented by FBI Special Agent Levord Burns.The event also offers for its certified legal assistant participants a CLA breakfast with a presentation by Steven W. Leigh on “Mediation.” All participants may attend the association’s installation banquet with Judge Robert W. Lee as the guest speaker. Participants may also enjoy evening social events that includes dinner and entertainment at Sloppy Joe’s and Howl at the Moon.The association members also may attend the PAF’s 28th Annual Membership Meeting, during which the 2004-2005 board of directors will be elected.A membership forum is set for September 18 at 1:30 p.m. during which issues concerning the association and the paralegal profession in Florida will be discussed.Seminar rates are $155 for members and $175 for nonmembers, and include educational sessions, handout materials, two continental breakfasts, and one luncheon.For more information call the PAF at (800) 433-4352 or visit its Web site at Bar honors two members Gifts from lawyers to The Florida Bar Foundation’s children’s legal services grant program through the Lawyers’ Challenge for Children on the 2004-05 Bar Fee Statement are running ahead of last year.As of July 15, 2,820 Florida Bar members have given $129,460 to the cause, up 42 percent from the same time a year ago.In a creative gift, the Carlton Fields law firm donated the $2,500 it received for winning the Young Lawyers Division Quality of Life Award and matched the amount adding $5,000 for children’s legal services grants in 2005.Bar sections and divisions also are stepping up to the plate again this year. The Appellate Practice Section made a $500 gift to the fund and Young Lawyers Division President Mike Faehner announced a $25,000 challenge gift for children’s legal services at the General Assembly at the Bar’s Annual Meeting in Boca Raton.The $25,000 YLD donation will be used to encourage greater sales of the Kids Deserve Justice specialty license plate benefitting the Foundation’s children’s legal services grant program. The plate, which will be available from local tag offices November 1, costs $25 at renewal time and an additional $18 before renewal. (See story on page 1 of the August 1 News. )The Bar and Foundation are finishing details of the marketing plan for the plate, which will take advantage of the offer by voluntary bar leaders to promote sale of the Kids Deserve Justice specialty plate among their members and by leading law firms that will encourage lawyers and support staff to join the effort to increase support for children’s legal services.Information about how to buy the Kids Deserve Justice plate is on the Bar’s Web site at attorney John Thornton, who chairs the Foundation’s Legal Assistance for the Poor Grant Committee, said the additional funds are needed to make up cuts in IOTA funds due to low interest rates.Gifts to the Lawyers’ Challenge for Children can be made directly to the Foundation to the attention of Amanda Styles at 109 East Church, P.O. Box 1553, Orlando 32802-1553, or through its Web site at law school gets $100,000 gift Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §2071(b), notice and opportunity for comment is hereby given of proposed amendments to the Rules and Internal Operating Procedures of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit.A copy of the proposed amendments may be obtained from the U.S. 11th Circuit’s Internet Web site at copy may also be obtained without charge from the Office of the Clerk, U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit, 56 Forsyth St., N.W., Atlanta, GA 30303, telephone (404) 335-6100. Comments on the proposed amendments may be submitted in writing to the clerk at the above street address by September 3.Applicants sought for jury instructions panel A longtime contributor to the University of Florida and its Levin College of Law recently pledged an additional gift of $100,000 to the law school’s Annual Fund to help provide opportunities for students to gain practical experience and to support academic programs and services.Lewis M. Schott donated the money in honor of his late wife, Marcia Whitney Schott. The two earned law degrees from UF in 1946. They were major donors to the law school’s Bruton-Geer Hall building campaign in the early 1980s, resulting in the naming of the Marcia Whitney Schott Courtyard, and later that same decade contributed $50,000 to help endow the Clarence TeSelle Professorships.“I’m very pleased with the progress of the college of law, and happy to be able to support its continued national advancement,” Schott said. “It helped prepare me for my career, and is the place that brought Marcia and me together.”PAF gets annual seminar A proposal to create an Animal Law Committee has received conceptual approval from the Bar’s Program Evaluation Committee, which has also recommended the continuation of the Equal Opportunities Law Section.PEC Chair Hank Coxe reported to the Board of Governors recently that the committee had some reservations about the animal law proposal, but those were addressed by the proponents.“We wanted to make sure this was not an animal rights activist issue, but in fact a meaningful attempt to create a substantive law committee,” Coxe said.“What they did do is effectively point out to the committee there are many interactions between animal law and other areas of law.. . . The people who made the presentation, I thought, did an excellent job and converted a number of people who are on the PEC and were initially opposed to an animal law committee.”The Animal Law Committee supporters will now come back with the mechanics of how the committee will work and also address budget issues, Coxe said.On the Equal Opportunities Law Section, Coxe said the PEC has been conducting the three-year review required of new sections and has been grappling with the problem of the section’s membership. Under Bar policies, sections are supposed to have membership equal to 1 percent of the active members of the Bar, but the Equal Opportunities Law Section has not met that goal.The PEC finally decided that since that policy was adopted after the section was formed, the section was grandfathered in and didn’t have to meet that standard, Coxe said.Several board members have expressed support for the section over the past year, especially with a recent emphasis on improving diversity in Bar activities.Association of Bankruptcy Judicial Assistants to meet August 15, 2004 Regular Newslast_img read more