The Florida Bar

Visit SideBar: News as it Happens often during the ongoing COVID-19 crisis for the latest news and information of interest to Florida Voluntary Bars.

  • Bar Listings

  • The SideBar News

  • Bar Leaders Conference

  • Voluntary Bar Calendar

  • Resources

Logo for the Side Bar blog

The SideBar provides monthly highlights of the incredible work of Florida’s voluntary bars, including summaries of bar achievements and member recognition.

Submit news to The SideBar.

November 2020

Restart. Rebound. Recover. Visit COVID-19 Resources for Voluntary Bars.

Constrained by the Pandemic, Vol Bars Adapt and Shine

At first, COVID-19 posed an existential threat to voluntary bar associations, hobbling the economy and forcing them to cancel some of their biggest draws — networking opportunities …

A Town Hall for Young Lawyers and Voluntary Bar Leaders

During social distancing, our responsibility to mentor and build relationships with those who are coming up behind us in their careers is more important than ever. With more virtual events being planned for 2021 …

Inclusion & Equality > #YLDisME

The Florida Bar Young Lawyers Division has released its first video testimonial for its web and social media campaign to help raise awareness of a diverse community of young attorneys. The #YLDisMe campaign …

Promoting the Rule of Law

The ABA Division for Public Education has announced the theme for Law Day 2021: “Advancing the Rule of Law Now.” This theme is intended to remind everyone that in times of calm and in times of unrest …

2000 Election Memory Project Released

November 2020 marks the 20th anniversary of the presidential election litigation that occurred in Florida in the fall of 2000. As part of its mission to preserve Florida Supreme Court history …

It’s Show Time – Fun Photos of the Season

The Barnes family of West Palm Beach, never dreamed they would be living in a whole new world. Despite all the ups and downs on this ride through 2020, they always seem to find the magic carpet …

Court Shares Response Plan In South Miami

The South Miami Kendall Bar held its  Virtual CLE Luncheon on Oct. 30. Chief Judge Bertila Soto was the featured speaker. Her timely presentation was on the “Court’s Actions During COVID-19 and the New Normal in the Court’s Operations” …

Asian American Bars reenact historic trial

A cast of Asian American attorneys and judges from across Florida reenacted the trial of Ronald Ebens for the 1982 killing of Vincent Chin from a script by the Asian American Bar Association of New York …

The Time for Women is Now

Hillsborough Association of Women Lawyers met virtually on Oct. 28 to discuss how women attorneys can use their unique strengths and skills to propel their careers and climb leadership ladders …

Miles for Justice Benefits Legal Aid

Members of the Hillsborough County Bar Association donated their feet, hands and hearts for the Miles for Justice virtual walk/run/ride-a-thon event throughout the week of Oct. 24- 31. The event was created to celebrate …

Spooktacular Bar Leaders in Tampa

A frightfully good time is reported from Hillsborough County Bar Association for their Halloween Virtual Bingo event. Cruella de Vil and Notorious RBG joined in to help make things fun …

Caribbean Bar Rocks the Virtual Gala

The Caribbean Bar Association Installation and Scholarship Gala was a hit by all standards. Members gathered via Zoom to celebrate the year, looked forward to 2021, and were reconciled to the moment by …

Annual Trivia Competition Goes Virtual

The Annual Trivia Competition returned for Orange County Bar members on Oct. 25. The only difference was this year’s game was virtual.  The trivia tournament was conducted via Twitch …

Setting Its Sights on the Future

After suspending Bar late fees, redesigning a website, recruiting financial help, and assisting the courts tackle a massive backlog, the Bar’s COVID-19 Pandemic Recovery Task Force is shifting gears …

Young Lawyers Zoom-o-Ween in Orange County

Chuckie from Rugrats. Tom Nook. A Rose Apothecary store employee. But when the votes were tallied, Moira Rose (Lauren Millcarek) stole the show. President Brandon Sapp reports an amazing time the Young Lawyer Section …

Voter Caravan Draws Voluntary Bar Support

The Coy family is the heart and soul of the George Edgecomb Bar Association and the voluntary bar community in the Tampa area. Theresa Jean-Pierre Coy is a past GEBA president and Travis is the current president …

Look for These Grads In Bar Service

A diverse group of familiar faces is among The Florida Bar Leadership Academy Class VII Fellows, who recently completed their experience. Despite the challenges of a pandemic, these graduates …

Minnis Bar Members Mentor at Stetson

Mentoring law students is a focus of the Fred G. Minnis, Sr. Bar Association. Leaders and members of the Minnis Bar took advantage of the opportunity to reach these young adults at Survival of the Fittest …

Hundreds of Judges Elected Unchallenged

A survey of election ballots shows hundreds of judges draw no challengers for their seats, and many judges go their whole careers without facing political opposition. Of 235 circuit judgeships in nonpartisan …

Hybrid (Online and In-Person) Events Successful in Jacksonville

Two events, two different elements to give participants an option to attend.   Lawyers in Jacksonville were ready to get together and the Jacksonville Bar Association delivered. First a member BBQ on Oct. 16 …

Resilient Leadership Series Continues in Tampa

The Federal Bar Association, Tampa Bay Chapter hosted Staying in the Game Part 2- Resilient Leadership on Oct. 21. The two-part series featured a discussion on leadership, diversity, and inclusion …

Relaxed lawyers in Palm Beach County

Starting their day the Zen way! These members of the Palm Beach County Bar Association were up early on Oct. 23 for a free session on meditation. Rainy days didn’t get them down …

Tips for Attracting and Keeping Sponsors

Getting a grip on the role of sponsors and insight for voluntary bar leaders on expectations was the focus of a town hall on Oct. 20. More than 50 voluntary bar organizations were represented on the Zoom call …

Mayoral Roundtable Hosted by Dade County Bar

On October 19, the Dade County Bar Association hosted candidates for Miami-Dade County Mayor Steve Bovo and Daniella Levine-Cava, who shared their experience and positions on important issues, allowing members to make informed decisions …

G.C. Murray is Young Floridian of the Year

Congratulations to Florida Justice Associations Director of Membership G.C. Murray, Jr. for being selected as the 2020 #YoungFloridianoftheYear by the Bob Graham Center for Public Service …

Local bars hosts Judicial Candidate Forum

South Palm Beach County Bar Association along with other local voluntary bars hosted a Judicial Candidates Forum on Oct. 16. The Forum included judicial runoff candidates …

Mindfulness Focus of FAWL Legends Event

The Palm Beach County Chapter of Florida Association for Women Lawyers and the F. Malcolm Cunningham Bar Association co-hosted Legal Legends: Breaking the Glass Ceiling with a Mindfulness Perspective …

Building A More Inclusive Judiciary

In recognition of Hispanic Heritage Month, the Florida Hispanic Bar Association hosted a virtual event on Oct. 15 to hear from several Hispanic Judges around the state about how to build a more inclusive bench …

Yum Rules the Judiciary in St. Pete

Cooking with the Judiciary is St. Petersburg Bar’s latest virtual adventure. Members gathered in October for two fun cooking experiences. They enjoyed a great evening of cooking and conversation …

Trivia at Center of Hispanic Heritage Celebration

Hispanic Heritage Month was celebrated with a special trivia night on Oct. 14. Members of the Palm Beach County Hispanic Bar Association met virtually to test their trivia skills …

Celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month

Another great collaboration between Broward County Hispanic Bar Association and Broward County Bar Association happened on Oct. 14-15 in Fort Lauderdale. In celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month, …

Seeking Helpers for FEMA Hurricane Disaster Relief Hotline

The disaster legal services hotline for those Floridians affected by #HurricaneSally is fully activated. The Florida Bar Young Lawyers Division needs more volunteer lawyers to answer calls that come into the hotline …

Practice of Law in the New Norm

Dori Foster-Morales, American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers – AAML – Florida Chapter Fellow and President of The Florida Bar, led the International Academy of Family Lawyers, USA Chapter zoom chat …

Judge joins APABA Tampa Bay Board

The Asian Pacific American Bar Association of Tampa Bay has added The Honorable Steve Berlin to its Executive Committee. Judge Berlin now serves as APABA Tampa Bay’s Judicial Liaison …

Local Government in the Spotlight

The Palm Beach County Bar Association Local Government and Land Use Committee recently hosted its inaugural CLE Webinar: The Nuts and Bolts of Local Government Operations …

A Timely Contribution in the Capital City

The Capital City Justice Association has made a generous contribution of $10,000 to the Florida Justice PAC! These funds will be used to support candidates for the Florida legislature …

Soulful food, soulful conversation, for a soulful cause!

Cooking for A Cause is the Greater Orlando Asian American Bar Association’s way to engage members for a virtual Asian Fusion Night to benefit a local charity. On Oct. 14, Chef Kevin Phanhvilay of Sticky Rice Lao Street Food …

Making Sushi in Seminole

Returning to an in-person event brought smiles to the faces of members of one voluntary bar in the 18th Judicial Circuit. A Table 4 Eight event was hosted by the Seminole County Florida Association for Women Lawyers …

Clearwater Bar Brings Its 90th To A Close

The Clearwater Bar Association had its final Membership Luncheon of 2020 on Oct. 9. Past President- Scott Schiltz and Judge Myriam Irizarry joined leaders at the bar office for a zoom luncheon …

Social Distancing Changes Jury Research

The Lee County Bar Association and US Legal Support hosted a virtual CLE on Oct. 8. Jury Research Techniques in the Age of Social Distancing was the focus. Brian Riley with US Legal Support (An LCBA Annual Sponsor), Dr. Stuart Miles and Dianna Bullard of DecisionQuest were the panel members. 

Diversity Symposium the Zoom Way

Members of the Tallahassee Bar Association and TBA Young Lawyers gathered around the virtual table to enjoy frank and informative conversation with judges, attorneys, and law students on Oct. 8 …

Garden Gnomes Come to Life for CFAWL

Indulging their creative side, members of the Central Florida Association for Women Lawyers gathered via Zoom for its “Gnomes at Night Craft Project” on October 6. The evening event included making clay gnomes …