Letter From The President Of The Georgia Chapter Of The Association Of Corporate Counsel

2005-04-01 00:00

To The Readers Of The Metropolitan Corporate Counsel :

Although a short month, February was one of the busiest for our chapter. Our monthly membership meeting featured Lex Mundi. Discussion of the topic of "The Interface: Finding and Supervising Foreign Counsel" was hosted by Alston & Bird's Ben Greer and led by panelists Marty Avallone, Kenneth Hannahs and Dolores Moro.

At the Emory Public Interest Committee's EPIC Inspiration Awards Ceremony, our chapter was honored for our annual EPIC grants that fund an Emory law student at a summer public interest job at Upper Chattahoochee Riverkeepers. One of the most interesting, vital and enjoyable law-related functions on the Atlanta Legal calendar, the event is run entirely by Emory Law Students.Master of CeremoniesJudge Glenda Hatchett recognized this year's honorees, including Judge Sharon Hill, Georgia Attorney General Thurbert Baker, and distinguished Atlanta lawyer Mary Ann B. Oakley.

Later in the month, we enjoyed a wine tasting event organized by Board Member Steve Kaplan, who chairs our Young Lawyer's Council (YLC). The event's generous sponsor, Hunton & Williams, was a fantastic host and ensured a relaxed evening of low-key networking and socializing.Our thanks to the firm and for all of Steve's efforts in energizing this membership sector. For more information about the YLC, please contact Steve at stevekaplan@homeownersloan.com.

The very next day, Chapter Vice President for Membership/YLC Joe Thesing coordinated a lunch CLE program for in-house counsel practicing in the northern metro Atlanta area. Our thanks to Joe and the event's generous sponsor, Marshall & Lueder. The topic "Joint Ventures and the Use of LLCs to Structure Them"was addressed by panelists Bob Marshall, Mike Lueder, Scott Minot, and, of course, Joe. We met a lot of new friends, as the event attracted a number of in-house counsel who aren't able to join us in Buckhead for our regular monthly meetings.

Our March membership meeting featured David Balser and Randy Evans of McKenna, Long & Aldridge, P.C. speaking on "Emerging Trends in Liability for In-House Counsel: Are Your Safe?"The event was the chapter's third CLE function in as many months - we've offered our chapter members ethics CLE, professionalism CLE and general CLE in addition to professional networking opportunities.

Our Board continues to be hard at work. Board members Betsy Griswold and Sally Austin are preparing a membership survey to assess the needs and interests of Georgia Chapter members. Chapter Vice President for Public Relations Teresa Kennedy has assembled a committee comprised of Myra Coleman, Traci Ellis, and Lori Shapiro who have submitted a grant proposal for "Diversity Dollars" to the Minority Corporate Counsel Association to fund a first-year law student summer intern in an in-house setting.Mary Ulmer-Jones, our immediate past president, is enthusiastically spearheading this year's Community Service Day - a national day of service that ACC is sponsoring that involves National Parks, as well as local parks. If you are interested in working with Mary on this project, please contact her at mary.ulmer-jones@bankofamerica.com.

Congratulations to the BellSouth Legal Department, under the leadership of General Counsel Marc Gary and Pro Bono Committee Chair Kendall Butterworth. The Department was recently awarded both the 2005 Laurie D. Zelon Pro Bono Award from the Pro Bono Institute at Georgetown University Law Center on March 4 as part of the 2005 Pro Bono Seminar/In-House Corporate Pro Bono Forum and, in February, the American Bar Association Section of Litigation's 2005 Pro Bono Award, awarded at the Section's meeting in Orlando.

Congratulations also to our 2004 Board Members who have been recently in the news. Penny Smith, formerly of Solvay, recently joined Thompson Hine in Atlanta to grow the firm's Life Science practice. Dale Hetzler, General Counsel of Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, is featured in a two-page spread in the March issue of GC Souththat focuses on Dale's mediation skills. In addition to being a skilled mediator, Dale is an accomplished musician, leading the Moonlight Band, a classic rock combo that also features former ACC Georgia Chapter President and long-time Board member Steve Schott. They play at Houck's, Fuzzy's, and the Bamboo Bar, among other venues. Watch for them!


Ted Kingsley