The last week of June will bring back special memories for me. It was the end of June last year that I was sworn in as your new president by Chief Justice Abrahamson. The events of those few days created lasting memories for me. Being surrounded by family, colleagues, and friends only added to the special nature of the occasion.
While last year’s State Bar of Wisconsin Annual Meeting and Conference (AMC) was special for me, it was not the first one I attended. I have found these convocations to be an excellent place to meet new lawyers as well as reacquaint myself with lawyers I have gotten to know over the years on a professional basis. More than once I’ve found that a lawyer who previously growled at me throughout a deposition can be a delightful dinner companion. I urge you to attend.
We make every effort at the AMC to facilitate relaxing, learning, and networking. The relaxing begins with music provided by D.J. Dann Smith from 6-9 p.m. on Wednesday, June 24. For those who wish, Thursday morning can begin with a 5K run or a 2K walk on the Grand Geneva Resort’s scenic trails or, if you prefer, a relaxing 45-minute yoga session beside the pool.
Thursday evening, you can join us for a night in Havana. D’CalleSon, a 12-piece, Milwaukee salsa band consisting of harmonized voices and a solid brass section, will play for your listening and dancing enjoyment from 7-10 p.m. Throughout the evening, complimentary soda, beer, wine, and mojitos will be served along with Cuban-influenced heavy hors d’oeuvres. Finally, at our closing luncheon on Friday, we’ll hear from Mo Rocca, correspondent for CBS Sunday Morning, host of the CBS Saturday-morning show Innovation Nation, and host and creator of the Cooking Channel’s My Grandmother’s Ravioli.
There will also be numerous opportunities to learn and to obtain CLE/EPR credits, from Wednesday afternoon to Friday afternoon. Up to 11 CLE credits and 6.5 EPR credits can be obtained while attending the AMC, on subjects ranging from litigation to estate planning, immigration to fracking, and governmental immunity to employee benefits.
More than once I’ve found that a lawyer who previously growled at me throughout a deposition can be a delightful dinner companion.
We all know that justice in America is predicated on the adversarial system with lawyers as the adversarial advocates. Our AMC is one of the best opportunities to drop our adversarial armor and don our colleague caps. It’s both refreshing and helpful to interact with our sometimes adversaries in the relaxed confines of the Grand Geneva Resort. This facet of the AMC, more than any other, keeps me coming back.
Finally, I have been assured by one of my law partners that there will be a large turnout, if for no other reason than to ensure that I won’t try to stick around for another term. I won’t, and I hope you can join me in June to welcome my able successor, Ralph Cagle, as your new president.