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President's Page by Emily Ellison

September is a time of year that feels transitional, full of new beginnings and opportunities. In grade school, returning to new classes with new teachers and friends always felt like there were new possibilities. At the BCBA, we are looking forward to robust programs and events with new opportunities to support our members.

In keeping with my theme of connections, since the Bench-Bar Retreat is in September, it seems an appropriate time to focus on the connection between the bench and the bar. The bench-bar connection is important for our members and the community at large.

Practicing law is meaningful work, but it can leave us with feelings of uncertainty, which lead to increased feelings of stress. In litigation, one can rarely be one hundred percent certain of a client’s outcome. Sometimes there is no controlling law on a legal issue and the outcome is unclear. This uncertainty is a stressor in my life. There are ways we can ease this feeling of uncertainty and reduce some of the stress.

One way is through the bench-bar connection. Attending presentations with judges where they give their perspective and opinions on attorney best practices and procedures in their courtrooms gives attorneys insight to feel more prepared and comfortable when in front of judges.

We are fortunate that our local judges are open to giving their time to present and have open discussions with attorneys about best practices and court procedures. An open dialogue between attorneys and judges can help ensure that attorneys understand how to best fulfill their role before the court and deliver better results for clients, which enhances the administration of justice in our community.

The BCBA offers ways to connect with and learn from your local judges and we are grateful to the judges who generously give their time to strengthen the bench-bar connection. We hope you can join us at the Bench-Bar Retreat on September 14th from 4:15pm - 8:00 pm at CU Law, where we’ll hear from Colorado Supreme Court Justice Maria E. Berkenkotter, Court of Appeals Judge Craig R. Welling, District Court Judges Nancy W. Salomone, Robert R. Gunning, Thomas F. Mulvahill, Bruce Langer, County Court Judge Elizabeth Brodsky, and Magistrate Thomas M. Ward. Attendees will receive one (1) Ethics credit and three (3) general CLE credits.

In November, come share a meal with your fellow BCBA members and 20th Judicial District Judges at the Annual Judges Dinner on November 2 from 5:30pm - 8:00pm at the St. Julien Hotel in Boulder. Please click here to register. We are grateful to 20th Judicial District Court Judge Dea M. Lindsey, who currently serves as the BCBA’s judicial ex-officio member, for generously donating her time to attend BCBA Board meetings and events. Judge Lindsey will present on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion on November 14th from 12:00pm - 1:00pm via Zoom. This will be for one (1) EDI credit and one (1) general CLE credit.

Another way to reduce the stress of uncertainty is through focusing on well-being. Some level of uncertainty may exist, but we can only do our best and take care of our physical, mental, and emotional well-being. To care for our physical and mental well-being, we can get out in nature, take your dog for a walk, exercise, engage in activities that bring joy, put time towards restoration and relaxation, practice yoga, meditate, develop mindfulness and compassion, and cultivate relationships with others.

Come enjoy nature and develop relationships with BCBA and Colorado Women’s Bar Association (CWBA) members on September 13th from 4:30pm - 6:00pm on a joint hike at Sanitas Valley and Dakota Ridge Trail in Boulder.

Then, join us for a free happy hour in Longmont at Bootstrap Brewery on September 21st from 4:30pm to 6:00pm. While I hope to see many fellow Longmont attorneys, you do not have to work or live in Longmont to attend. Please click here to RSVP. The BCBA continues to host weekly Bagels with the Bar at the Bar office every Wednesday from 8:30am to 10:00am. Drop in, grab a free Moe’s bagel and coffee, and meet other BCBA members.

We hope you find these opportunities help support you both professionally and personally.

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Boulder, CO 80301

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