Pledging to lead based on experience
It would be my privilege to serve as president of the State Bar of California. If there ever was a time for a president to demonstrate strong leadership, it is the present.
I can provide that leadership.
As a sole practitioner for the last 19 years I feel I have a unique perspective of the problems that face the largest segment of our membership. I encounter those problems on a daily basis.
It is the responsibility of the board of governors to serve as trustees for and guardians of the legal system in our state. If elected president I would relentlessly pursue that charge.
The board should identify those issues important to the profession, the public and our members and stay focused on resolving them. Under my leadership, individual and group meetings with board members would address issues of openness, inclusiveness, leadership and final development of the long-range strategic plan that fits within the mission statement of the State Bar.
Developing a legislative strategy in view of recent events would be first on my agenda.
Creating means to improve our working relationship with the governor and the legislature is of utmost importance.
Our commitment to diversity and legal services would remain a high priority, as would working with our new executive director to ensure a smooth transition.
We should continue to scrutinize the budget. The recently approved budget review process should be incorporated into the board's long- range planning process.
Efforts to improve the efficiency of the discipline system would continue.
Recently implemented AB 2787 will provide avenues for cost reductions, and the elimination of lengthy written opinions on default matters could also provide a source for future cutbacks. Cutbacks, however, should not compromise due process concerns, or the office of chief trial counsel's ability to utilize its strike force capabilities.
I believe that we should heighten efforts to keep civility and professionalism in the minds of our members.
In addition, I feel that we should demonstrate unwavering support for an independent judiciary and adequate funding for the day-to-day operation of our trial courts.
With respect to family issues, I have found that the practice of law has become increasingly more difficult over the last five years. As a result, more time is spent in the office and away from the family. The resources that come to bear with so many small firm and solo members lead me to believe that collectively we could seek to secure better benefits such as favorable banking or credit union participation, better rates on loans, insurance and group memberships.
During my three years on the board, I have successfully undertaken major leadership assignments. Implementation of the discipline evaluation report was my first task as a member of the board.
I chaired both the legal committee and the ADR Task Force during my second year. The creation of the Standing Committee on ADR emerged from that responsibility.
This year, I chaired the committee on regulation and discipline, which was formerly the admissions and competence, and discipline committees. Additionally, I have served two years on the administration and finance committee.
These responsibilities have given me a unique perspective on the operation of the State Bar.
These duties and my previous tenure as president of the San Diego County Bar Association lead me to feel confident I can be a strong and effective leader for the State Bar of California.
Marc Adelman is a sole practitioner in San Diego.