Inside Track: Fighting a Community Meth Epidemic: Antigo Lawyer Uses Skills Gained at Leadership Academy:

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    Fighting a Community Meth Epidemic: Antigo Lawyer Uses Skills Gained at Leadership Academy

    Leadership isn’t just managing a business or serving on a nonprofit board. Leadership is also stepping up to make a difference when life turns for the worst for those around you. Langlade County District Attorney Elizabeth Constable – a graduate of the State Bar Leadership Academy – is doing just that. The second academy is seeking applicants: apply by Aug. 12.
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    Aug. 2, 2017 – In January 2017, Elizabeth Constable had two more sessions to go in the State Bar of Wisconsin’s first Leadership Academy. After attending the first event in November, she was looking forward to the next sessions in February and April.

    And that same month, Constable – the district attorney of Langlade County – noticed a sudden rise in cases involving methamphetamine abuse.

    40 Percent of Cases

    Langlade County Circuit Court now hears cases involving methamphetamine – including possession or crimes motivated by those trying to get the illegal drug – almost daily.

    “Over the past seven months, methamphetamine is – directly or indirectly – part of at least 40 percent of the cases that I prosecute,” Constable said.

    Meth, Constable said, is also ruining the lives of the children whose parents become addicts, children who must be taken out of their parental homes and often are placed into foster care.

    But now, thanks to her participation in the Leadership Academy, she has plans to fight what has become an increasingly tragic epidemic.

    Elizabeth Constable with Slinky

    Elizabeth Constable shows an unexpected prize she received in response to a speaker’s question during the February session of the Leadership Academy.

    Gaining the Skills to Fight an Epidemic

    The G. Lane Ware Leadership Academy is a multi-session training program that fosters leadership skills in Wisconsin lawyers. A new session begins in November, and Wisconsin lawyers are encouraged to join the program – the deadline to apply is Aug. 12.

    The academy teaches leadership skills, including time management, public speaking, dispute management, active listening, fiscal management, and networking.

    And those skills will play a central role in her plans to direct a community-wide response to deal with the epidemic.

    “I am reaching out to local partner agencies and other professionals as I work on developing my community’s response to a serious methamphetamine epidemic,” Constable said. “I will use what I learned at the academy to help create a comprehensive, meaningful response that will address all of the facets of this issue in a sustainable and lasting way.”

    G. Lane Ware Leadership Academy Class of 2017

    Class of 2017 Leadership Academy

    The participants of the first G. Lane Ware Leadership Academy, from left, front row: Gabe Johnson-Karp, Stacy Ann Alexejun, Mark Todd Johnson, Lindsay Fedler, Trevor Lippman; middle row: Makda Fessahaye, Annabelle Vang, Katie Kegel, Lindsay Healless, Katherine Charlton, Vanessa Klemish, Elizabeth Constable, Heather Nett, Clyde Tinnen; top row: Patrick Gould, Renae Flowers, Stephanie Propsom, Michelle Hockers, Kristen Hardy, Marisa Kasriel, Erin Kastberg, Amber Raffeet August, and David Turek.

    The Best Part: Making Connections

    The academy helped Constable improve skills that help her manage her office. But it also helped her in a way she didn’t expect: it greatly enhanced her networking skills.

    “I’m now more aware of the times when I have the opportunity to create a new contact,” she said. “The academy pulled a lot of it together for me.”

    She also appreciates the role the academy played in connecting her with attorneys outside of her practice area.

    “I think the connections I made with the other participants may have been the best part of the academy for me,” she said.

    Apply by Aug. 12 for 2017-2018 Academy

    Apply before Aug. 12 to join the program that gives lawyers skills, strategies, and resources to become effective leaders in the profession and community. Candidates will be notified of the selection committee’s decision by mid-September. Space is limited.

    Topics include: effective written and verbal communication, time management, public speaking, conflict resolution, active listening, community leadership, and networking. The program will be submitted for CLE credit.

    • When: Nov. 3-4, 2017; Feb. 2, 2018; and April 13-14, 2018; attendance at all five program sessions is required.

    • Where: State Bar Center, Madison

    • Apply by: Aug. 12, 2017

    • Cost: $300. A limited number of tuition scholarships are available on the basis of financial need. For more information, review the application instructions.

    • To Apply: Review the application instructions and submit your application by Aug. 12. Applicants will be notified of selection by Sept. 15.

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