Vol. 76, No. 6, June
Wisconsin Law Foundation funds supreme court
Visitors to the Capitol can view "Enduring Values in Changing Times,"
a 12-minute video shown in the supreme court hearing room describing the
history of the law in Wisconsin and the key role the supreme court has
played in the state's history.
All seven current justices appear on the video, which addresses
judicial independence, describes the processes of the supreme court and
court of appeals, and explains the importance of oral arguments and the
process of drafting judicial opinions.
"The supreme court hearing room has an important story to share about
our legal history and the heritage of our society," said Chief Justice
Shirley S. Abrahamson. "Its murals describe the sources of Wisconsin law
while the marble busts and the portraits of past chief justices help
connect us to people that have shaped this court - and the law of the
state - over the last 150 years. The video will help us give voice to
our rich legal history and to educate the public about the court's role
as leader of the third branch of government."
The video, which promotes judicial education and celebrates the 150th
anniversary of the supreme court, is made possible by a grant from the
Wisconsin Law Foundation. The foundation, a nonprofit corporation, has
supported such projects as the High School Mock Trial Tournament and the
Youth for Justice Program. For more information about the foundation,
contact John Daugherty at the State Bar at (800) 444-9404, ext. 6038, or
org jdaugherty wisbar wisbar jdaugherty org.
Wisconsin bar exam rescoring did not change
The Wisconsin Board of Bar Examiners (BBE) reports that, while 35
Wisconsin bar examinees were affected by the National Conference of Bar
Examiners (NCBE) announcement of a "clerical error" that necessitated
recalculation of all 20,204 law students who took the bar exam
nationally last February, no pass/fail RATES changed in
The error resulted from a "keying error" during the scoring process
done in Iowa under the NCBE's auspices that did not credit a correct
answer on a multiple-choice question.
Record-breaking bankruptcy filings
The Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts reported that the number
of bankruptcies rose 7.1 percent in the 12-month period ending March 31,
2003, breaking records for business and personal filings.
Nationally, business bankruptcies dropped 5.8 percent from the
previous 12-month period, with 37,548 companies filing. Personal
bankruptcies totaled 1.57 million, up 7.4 percent from 1.46 million in
the same 12-month period.
During the same 12-month period in Wisconsin, business bankruptcies
dropped slightly in the eastern district from 235 to 217 and rose from
518 to 639 in the western district. Personal bankruptcies increased
statewide from 14,653 to 17,514 in the eastern district and 7,229 to
8,129 in the western district.
Filings per authorized judgeship have risen from 2,965 to 4,973 in
the 12-month period ending March 31, 2003. No new bankruptcy judgeships
have been created since 1992. A pending bankruptcy reform bill, S. 1061,
would authorize 36 new judge-ships in 22 judicial districts. View the
entire bill at thomas.loc.gov.
Nominations sought for 2003 Marygold Melli
When you think of Wisconsin women who have significantly advanced the
interests of women, the legal profession, justice, and society as a
whole, does anyone immediately come to mind? The Legal Association for
Women invites you to nominate that individual for the 2003 Marygold
Melli Achievement Award.
Presented annually since 1994, the award honors Wisconsin women who
have made significant contributions to women in the law by advancing the
interests of women in the legal profession, promoting improvements in
the administration of justice, promoting equality and social justice for
all people, or improving relations between the legal profession and the
The award honors Marygold Melli, professor emerita at the U.W. Law
School, who managed a distinguished career at the school while writing
prolifically, performing extensive community and professional service,
and raising four children.
Previous award recipients are: Ruth B. Doyle, Atty. Mary Lou Munts,
Chief Justice Shirley Abrahamson, Hon. Barbara Crabb, Atty. Diane
Greenley, Prof. June Weisberger, Prof. Louise Trubek, Atty. Susan
Steingass, Atty. Pamela Barker, and Atty. Eunice Gibson.
For a nomination form, contact Nancy Wettersten at (608) 252-9388 or
com ncw dewittross dewittross ncw com. The deadline
for nominations is Aug. 15.
Milwaukee Bar memorial service honors
Milwaukee Bar Association Memorial Service presenters (from left):
Daniel D. Blinka, MBA president-elect; Dean Joseph Kearney, Marquette
University Law School; Mary Richards, Association of Women Lawyers
president; C. James Riester, MBA Memorials Committee member; and Thomas
L. Shriner, MBA Memorials
When the Milwaukee Bar Association (MBA) held its 39th annual
memorial service this May, event founder Lester J. Dencker was missing.
For 38 years Dencker organized the tribute to deceased Milwaukee Bar
members. Last year he announced he would step down as the MBA Memorials
presenter, a position he held since 1964. Dencker passed away in October
at the age of 88.
According to long-time friend Atty. James Riester, "Lestersincerely
believed that members who died during the past year should be publicly
remembered through a memorial service. Since the annual service began,
more than 1,500 Milwaukee Metro area members have been remembered."
More than 90 attorneys and judges attended this year's ceremony at
the Milwaukee County Courthouse to remember 55 colleagues who passed
away since May 2002. "To our knowledge, the MBA is the only major bar
association to annually present a memorial service," says Riester.
Visit www.milwbar.org to read
more about this event and its founder.
Eastern District Bar holds annual meeting in
All State Bar members are invited to attend the Eastern District of
Wisconsin Bar Association's (EDWBA) first annual luncheon awards and CLE
program on June 18 in Milwaukee. (See In The
"The Eastern District of Wisconsin: The E-District" CLE program, from
8:30 a.m. to 12 p.m., will be in the Federal Building. Topics include
electronic litigation, electronic discovery, and E-Ethics.
Luncheon speaker U.S. District Judge J.P. Stadtmueller will present
"3 Months, 144 Witnesses & 911 Exhibits: What You Always Wanted to
Know About an E-Trial," at noon at the Pfister Hotel.
The CLE program and luncheon is $45 for EDWBA members; $85 for
nonmembers. Lunch only is $40. Annual EDWBA membership dues are $40. The
program has been submitted for 3.0 CLE credits.
For more information, visit www.edwba.org or contact Tia Torhorst at
(414) 274-6760 or org ttorhorst milwbar milwbar ttorhorst org.