President's Page by Renee Ezer
“Change is the only constant in life.” -- Heraclitus
As I sit down to write my last President’s Page, I’m struck by how quickly this year has passed. This thought is not specific to my presidential year; it seems to me that all of the years pass quickly now. And the challenge is to make sure that each one has value, and if we are lucky, that we are able to make a positive impact on the things and people that matter most to each of us.
Looking back on this year, the Bar implemented many changes that positively impacted the membership, and created multiple opportunities to bring members together with one another, and with the underserved populations of Boulder County.
We started the year with conversations and presentations about wellness and professionalism. The bottom line here is that life can be stressful and part of adulting for all of us has to include self-care. When you board an airplane, flight attendants tell you to secure your oxygen mask before helping others. This is sage advice, with broad applicability -- especially for lawyers and judges.
We watched and celebrated as Judge Berkenkotter retired, Judge Bakke assumed the role of Chief Judge, and Judge Salomone was sworn in. Just months later, we filled with pride when our very own Judge Berkenkotter became one of the three nominees for the vacancy on the Colorado Supreme Court created by the retirement of Chief Justice Nancy E. Rice. (Go, Judge Berkenkotter!!)
We produced, sponsored, supported and presented at community events for the benefit of seniors and underserved populations. We accepted pro bono cases from BCLS and BCAP, acted as Pro Se Volunteers, and staffed free legal clinics throughout the year. In December, the Bar sponsored a gift drive for A Precious Child, which made the holidays very happy for more than 70 underprivileged children in Boulder County. This year the Board of Directors rebranded its fundraiser for Colorado Legal Services as the “Justice for All Ball”, which was wildly successful in terms of attendance, community participation and funds raised for contribution to CLS. Volunteer attorneys coached teams throughout Boulder County in the CBA Mock Trial Competition. For the first time since that program began, a Boulder County team – from Fairview High School – earned a place in the National competition.
This year, the Bar office got new hardware, new software, a new website and logo, and a new conference room. We now have our own space for CLEs, as well as a space practitioners can rent for meetings, depositions, mediations, etc. This has been a great addition for the benefit of our members. We also have a presence on social media, and the Bar staff is excellent at keeping us connected with stories and information relevant to all aspects of our professional lives.
As we move into the next year, the Boulder County Bar Association is poised for continued positive growth and impact. I encourage you to look for, and take advantage of, opportunities to connect with colleagues and our community as a member and as a volunteer leader. Many thanks to my fellow board members Abigail Smith, Brad Hall, Jennifer Lorenz, Ron Jung, Jack Peters, Jeff Rose, Nate Miller, and Sara Pritchard for your creativity, your great communication skills, your hard work. Special thanks to the Hon. Judy LaBuda and Professor Deborah Cantrell for your participation and unique perspectives from the 20th Judicial District and the CU School of Law. And, heartfelt thanks to Laura Ruth and Kyle Mares, who gave everything they had this year to support the Bar’s transition.
Looking forward to seeing everyone at the BCBA Annual Meeting on Thursday, June 7th at 5:00 p.m. at the Bohemian Biergarten, where I will pass my gavel to Brad Hall, and prepare to leave this office with wonderful memories and high hopes for next year’s Bar leadership and the growing collegiality and connection among its members.