Rotunda Report: Donate Today to Help State Bar Reach National Mock Trial Fundraising Goal:

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    Donate Today to Help State Bar Reach National Mock Trial Fundraising Goal

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    Oct. 24, 2013 – After a strong start, the State Bar of Wisconsin's fundraising thermometer for the 2014 National Mock Trial Championship rests at $83,000, which is less than 50 percent of the necessary $200,000. Despite the stagnant funds, Wisconsin's National Mock Trial Executive Committee remains hopeful that they will reach their goal.

    “If each of the State Bar’s 24,000 members makes even a small contribution – that could mean skipping the purchase of one coffee beverage for the day – we can reach our $200,000 goal,” said Michael Mather, co-chair of the State Bar’s National High School Mock Trial Championship Event Planning Committee and litigation associate with the Milwaukee office of Godfrey & Kahn.

    According to Mather, while many organizations have been generous, budget concerns and other considerations have slowed contributions from large firms and organizations.  Though they still have time to pitch in, Mather believes that the “slow start” in fundraising can be offset by small contributions from individual members.

     “As attorneys, we have a professional duty to use our talents to support our communities,” Mather said. “Hosting the National Mock Trial Championship is a big deal, and without the financial support of our legal community, this event will fall short of the high expectations we’ve set.”

    Mather says the National Mock Trial Championship will be the perfect opportunity to showcase Madison, the state of Wisconsin and the State Bar to a national audience.

    Taking into account attendance from past championships, the State Bar expects more than 1,000 people – parents, students, teachers, coaches and judges – to be in Madison from May 9 to 11.

    “In order to get the ball rolling now, we need to secure the appropriate amount of funds,” Mather said. “We not only have to book venues for the events, but organize daily breakfasts and lunches, security and rental costs, and other supplies.”

    Katie StenzKatie Stenz is the public affairs coordinator with the State Bar of Wisconsin. She can be reached at org kstenz wisbar wisbar kstenz org, or by phone at (608) 250-6145.

    Mather said that without the support of State Bar members and the general public, putting together a program of this magnitude would not be possible.

    “Support in any fashion, from a monetary donation – no matter how large or small – to the donation of time during the event, is welcome and greatly appreciated,” Mather said. “Please support this wonderful program by donating today.”

    The State Bar and its charitable arm, the Wisconsin Law Foundation, recently launched an online giving campaign. To donate online, visit nationalmocktrial2014.wisbar.org and select the Donate Now button. All donations are tax deductible.

    Checks can also be made out to the Wisconsin Law Foundation and mailed to P.O. Box 7158 Madison, WI 53707-7158. The group welcomes multi-year donations, which must be made by Feb. 1, 2014.

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