Leadership of the State Bar not only involves the
Board of Governors but also lawyers throughout California who make significant
contributions to the profession by volunteering to serve on one of the State Bars
The State Bars committees presently consist of 14 Standing
Committees, 12 Special Boards, Commissions and Committees, and 17 Section Executive
Committees. The standing and special committees advise and serve the Board of Governors
with regard to concerns that relate to the administration of justice and the practice of
law, or that affect the profession at large. The State Bar sections address the concerns
and interests of a specific segment of the profession. Each sections executive
committee assists the Board of Governors in matters relating to the section and supervises
the sections activities such as its educational programs, membership communications,
publications and substantive committees.
Appointment Considerations. Each year the Board of Governors appoints
approximately 150-200 new members to these committees. The board strives to make
appointments that will achieve diversity and broad representation of the California legal
community. The participation of all State Bar members is encouraged by the board. From
time to time, the board may appoint representatives of other professions and members of
the public to select committees.
The State Bar does not discriminate against persons on the basis of
sex, race, color, ancestry, religious creed, national origin, physical disability
(including HIV and AIDS) or mental disability, medical condition (cancer), age (over 40),
marital status, denial of family care leave, political affiliation, sexual orientation,
disabled veteran or Vietnam era veteran status.
Limitations. Applicants may apply for a maximum of three committees
but can be appointed to only one committee. No more than one member of a law firm or
office may be appointed to a particular entity. In no case shall the Board of Governors
appoint a person who is subject to disciplinary probation. Applicants for appointment to a
section executive committee must be members of that section.
Term of Appointment and Time Commitment. Members are appointed to
serve three-year terms, with the exception of the Committee of Bar Examiners, whose
members serve four-year terms. On occasion, the board may appoint a member to fill an
unexpired vacancy (i.e., the appointee serves only the remaining portion of the term of
the member who resigned).
The State Bars committee year runs from the State Bars
Annual Meeting to Annual Meeting. The 2000-2001 committee year starts at the close of the
2000 Annual Meeting (i.e., Sept. 17, 2000) and ends at the close of the 2001 State Bar
Annual Meeting (date to be announced). Terms for the 2000-2001 appointments commence at
the close of the 2000 Annual Meeting, Sept. 17, 2000.
Committees differ in the number of meetings scheduled in a year, but
a typical meeting requires two to four hours preparation and lasts four to six
hours. The meeting locations generally alternate between San Francisco and Los Angeles;
many meetings are conducted by conference call. Committee members take an oath of office
and receive no compensation for services. Committee members may be reimbursed for approved
travel expenses, in accordance with the State Bars travel policy and the committees
Application Filing. The application period for the 2000-2001
appointments begins Jan. 1, 2000, and the deadline for receipt of applications is March 1,
2000. Every applicant must submit a 2000-2001 application.
Application Review and Board Appointment. Committees review the
appointment applications in the spring and forward their recommendations to the Board of
Governors. The Committee on Ethnic Minority Relations, the Committee on Sexual Orientation
Discrimination, the Committee on Women in the Law and the California Young Lawyers
Association may also review and recommend applicants to the Board of Governors. The
designated board committee will consider the appointments at its June meeting, and the
Board of Governors will make the appointments at its August 2000 meeting. The ultimate
authority to make appointments rests with the board.
Notification. Applicants are notified of the boards
appointments not later than the last day of the State Bar Annual Meeting (Sept. 17, 2000).
Those appointed are notified as early as possible to allow their participation at the
Annual Meeting. Applications of those not selected are kept on file to consider for any
vacancies that may arise later in the committee year.
List of Committees. The committees to which applicants may apply are
listed below. For additional information on the areas of interest of the committee or
section, eligibility requirements, special qualifications sought, participation of
nonlawyers, number of meetings, etc., please contact the committees staff liaison or
the Office of the Secretary/Appointments at the State Bar offices.