The Florida Bar

FULL TEXT SideBar August 2019

August 2019

The SideBar provides monthly highlights of the incredible work of
Florida’s voluntary bars.

Unified Bahamas relief effort in the 18th Circuit

Spared of Hurricane Dorian’s wrath, the 18th Judicial Circuit bar associations have come together to provide relief for those in the Bahamas. The joint initiative by Brevard County Bar Association, Brevard County Bar Association YLD, Brevard County Women Lawyers, Seminole County Bar Association and Seminole County Association of Women Lawyers provides two drop-off points for…

Loads of goods for #BahamaStrong

Under the leadership of the Broward County Bar Association, one email snowballed into more than 20 organizations coming together to help those in need in the Bahamas. Through the efforts of the voluntary bar community, a 10-foot Uhaul was filled to capacity and additional carloads were necessary to get the large collection of goods to collection…

More hurricane relief efforts for the Bahamas!

The Clearwater Bar Association is supporting the Fred G. Minnis, Sr. Bar Association’s drive to collect supplies needed in the Bahamas. Hurricane Dorian devastated the islands of Grand Bahama and Abaco and the supplies will be sent to these two areas. Drop-off points were set up in St. Pete, Clearwater and Pinellas Park. Clearwater Bar also invited members…

Collection drive for Bahamas

The Palm Beach County Hispanic Bar Association joined several local organizations to lead a collection drive to help Hurricane Dorian-ravaged areas in the Bahamas.  A total of 26 pallets of goods will arrive on Sept. 11 when distribution begins in Grand Bahama. It was a true community-wide initiative and the Palm Beach County Hispanic Bar…

Bookbags and School Supplies for Dominican Republic

In conjunction with the Dominican American National Foundation, the Dominican American Bar Association provided students with backpacks filled with school supplies through member and sponsor donations. The DABA held a summer mixer in Coral Gables on July 30 to raise support for the back-to-school event.  

Sharing access to legal services

Asian Pacific American Bar Association of Tampa Bay sponsored the Bay Area Legal Services’ participation at Barrio Fiesta Santacruzan in an effort to educate Asian communities about the nonprofit public interest law firm. BALS is dedicated to providing assistance to those with limited access to legal services. The majority of its funding supports legal assistance…

Martin County Bar welcomes Bar President

The Martin County Bar extended a friendly welcome to Florida Bar President John M. Stewart on Aug. 16 as guest speaker of the membership luncheon. Following his presentation, MCBA President Jason Berger presented Stewart with a commemorative book featuring the town of Stuart. Stewart is one of two Bar presidents to serve from the Treasure Coast…

Stewart shares leadership lessons in Miami

Florida Bar President John M Stewart got a hearty welcome from the voluntary bar community in Miami when he shared leadership lessons at the Miami-Dade Chapter of the Florida Association for Women Lawyers luncheon on Sept. 5. Co-sponsors included the Dade County Bar Association, Haitian Lawyers Association, Gwen S. Cherry Black Women Lawyers Association, Wilkie D. Ferguson, Jr. Bar…

Bar President tapped for future programs

Bar President tapped for future programs Augusto Perera of the South Miami-Kendall Bar Association (SMKBA) was among many voluntary bar leaders in the crowd when President John M. Stewart spoke in Miami recently. Following a presentation on leadership and The Florida Bar, Stewart was tapped for several other speaking engagements, including one SMKBA in the coming…

Mentor training set for FAWL in Love with GAL

The FAWL in Love with GAL project is a partnership between the Guardian ad Litem (GAL) Program and the Florida Association of Women Lawyers connecting FAWL members with older youth in foster care. The FAWL member will mentor the youth as they transition into independence. Special training sessions this Fall earn 7 hours of CLE…

Fight continues for parental leave

Members of the Florida Association for Women Lawyers presented oral arguments to the state Supreme Court on Aug. 27. The association supports amending Rule 2.570 of the Florida Rules of Judicial Administration to allow for mandatory continuances in civil trial proceedings, with client consent, for parental leave requests from lead counsel. From left, members of the…


The Florida Bar has issued a call for nominations for the annual pro bono service awards, which honor lawyers, judges, law firms and associations that have contributed extraordinary pro bono service. The deadline for most nominations is Oct. 24. The Florida Bar and the Supreme Court invite nominations from legal aid groups, civic organizations, fellow…

Assistance offered for Panhandle storm victims

  Many people are still struggling in the Panhandle after Hurricane Michael, which struck in October 2018. On Aug. 10, the Northern District of the Florida Bankruptcy Bar Association hosted a free legal clinic at Gulf Coast State College to help those still dealing with the hardships. Attorneys helped answer questions and point locals in…

Embracing Diversity in South Florida

Diverse viewpoints are important to business and bar leaders. Celebrating this diversity was the theme of a reception held on Aug. 6 in Miami when JAMS formerly (“Judicial Arbitration and Mediation Services”), hosted an event to recognize Gilbert K. Squires, as the 103rd President of the Dade County Bar Association. Several area voluntary bar leaders also…

Bar leaders turn Bartenders

The Legal Aid Foundation of Tallahassee participated in a guest bartending event this summer at Happy Motoring. The bar allowed 100 percent of the tips from guest checks to go to the Foundation for programs to help bring awareness to the community of their civil rights.  Guest bartenders were left, Magie Ozarowski (president, Tallahassee Women Lawyers)…

Connecting in Orlando

Networking and welcome was the theme of the Paul C. Perkins Bar Association’s Aug. 20 reception. The annual event was held at The District Gastrobar in Orlando and brought together new and prospective members as well as other area voluntary bar leaders.

Cancer survivors honored at Tropicana Field

Aug. 17 was not just another night at the ballpark. Thousands watched as a breast cancer survivor Theresa Jean-Pierre Coy threw the opening pitch during Tampa Bay Rays #Salute to Survivors Night at Tropicana Field. Coy, a past president of the George Edgecomb Bar Association, was treated at Moffit Cancer Center more than a year…

Robe tradition continues in Tallahassee

It’s a tradition and always a honor for the Tallahassee Bar Association to present the judicial robe to new county/circuit judges. Here, Board of Director G.C Murray II presents the robe to Leon County Judge Anthony B. Miller during his Investiture Ceremony on Aug. 16 at the Leon County Courthouse.

Health and Wellness in Lee County

A career in the legal field will work out your mind but what about your body? That’s the challenge from the Lee County Bar Association, who invited members recently to sweat it out with a workout at Orangetheory Fitness. President John Webb, pictured second from left, along with other LCBA members participated in the Health…

Culinary treat for South Palm Beach Women Lawyers

Lawyers are chefs too! Just ask the ladies of South Palm Beach Women Lawyers Association who had a blast cooking, eating, drinking and networking at Sur La Table. The culinary adventure was hosted by Merryl Lynch and everything was taken care of in the Sur La Table kitchen, even the dishes!

Getting the legal scoop on driverless vehicles

Autonomous vehicles have become a reality and may pave the way for future systems where computers take over driving. Although self-driving vehicles are still in the testing stage, lawyers should be ready when the cars are. The reality of this mobility prompted the Association of Corporate Counsel – North Florida Chapter to offer a CLE presentation…

Serving the homeless in Fort Lauderdale

Members of the Association of Corporate Counsel South Florida Chapter had an opportunity to give back to the community by serving a meal to those in need.  Working through the Broward Partnership for the Homeless, Inc., the group put on aprons and tended the kitchen; serving brunch on Aug. 25 to residents of a local homeless shelter…

Politically active with growing influence

Hispanics are the fastest-growing portion of Florida’s electorate heading into the 2020 election. Advancing the best interest of the Hispanic community is also a priority of the Broward County Hispanic Bar Association. BCHBA Secretary Nazarena Rosales Hauser and President Aron J. Gibson took the opportunity recently to meet with Congressman Ted Deutch to give him the Hispanic legal community’s perspective. 

Raising the Bar in Central Florida

The Central Florida Trial Lawyers Association Raising the Bar 2019 Conference was held Aug. 21 at the Historic Dubsdread Conference Center in Orlando. The packed-house participated in five CLE presentations on hot topics from jury selection to evidence strategies. The 14th Annual event also served as a drop-off point for the CFTLA’s charity programs  Dress for…

Book signing headlines summer event for Colbar

During the summer, the Colombian American Bar Association hosted a Happy Hour at Seasons 52 in Coral Gables.  Colombian reporter, foreign correspondent, author and diplomat Enrique Córdoba, joined the group for a giveaway and signing of his new book “De la Tierra del HIELO a la Tierra del FUEGO” — Great Moments In A Journey Through…

Views from the Bench in Miami

The Cuban American Bar Association 2019 Judicial Luncheon was held on Aug. 9 at The Ritz-Carlton Coconut Grove in Miami.  Members enjoyed the judicial perspectives of Chief Judge Bertila Soto, Judge Adalberto Jordan and Judge Monica Gordo. The event was well attended and included a post-lunch social hour for even more time to network with…

Leveraging technology in NW Florida

The rise of technology has led to rapid change in the way we communicate, live and conduct business. To help their members keep up with trends and learn from other lawyers key ways that technology can benefit a law practice, the Escambia-Santa Rosa Bar Association hosted a workshop on Aug. 23 in Pensacola. Tom Gonzalez with Beggs &…

Discussing real issues important to women

Electronic communication may be king, but nothing is more valuable to an elected official than face-to-face engagement with constituents. Central Florida Association for Women Lawyers President Jamie Moses and board members Lauren Millcarek and Traci Deen felt empowered when they were invited to sit down with Rep. Amy Mercado to discuss upcoming legislation affecting women in…

Spreading Sunshine in Tampa

The Hillsborough Association for Women Lawyers launched the first session of its Diversity & Leadership Breakfast Series on Aug. 29. This session featured advice and tips from Melanie S. Griffin of Spread Your Sunshine on ways to help build your brand and expand your network. The event was well attended and offered invaluable guidance for young lawyers…

Manatee Women Lawyers honor one of their own

Grace Reeves, president of Manatee Association for Women Lawyers (left), and her board honored past president Terri Cromley (middle) at the MFAWL social at Motorworks Brewing on Aug. 29. FAWL President Kyleen Hinkle stopped by for the festivities.

Women Lawyers support Molly’s House

On Aug. 27, members of Martin County Association for Women Lawyers held their kickoff event at Molly’s House in Stuart. Molly’s House, a purpose-built Hospital Hospitality House, provides short-term, affordable accommodations for the families of hospitalized loved ones and hospital outpatients. FAWL members brought gift cards in support of this effort.

Yoga sets year in motion for Palm Beach Women Lawyers

Palm Beach County Women Lawyers Working Parents Committee, Health and Wellness Committee and Membership Committee kicked-off the group’s first member event of the year with yoga and kid-friendly activities on Aug. 3. The event was held outdoors at the PGA West Pavilion in Palm Beach Gardens.

Showing Support in Pinellas County

The Lure St. Pete was the venue for the August social hosted by the Pinellas County Chapter of the Florida Association for Women Lawyers. Many areas women lawyers attended the event, led by President Shavarne B Dahlquist. .


The Polk Association for Women Lawyers was recognized as a finalist in the organizational category at the Athena Awards hosted by the Lakeland Chamber of Commerce and Junior Service League of Greater Lakeland. Athena Organizational Awards recipients are organizations that create an organizational culture that encourages women to achieve their full leadership potential, give back to…

Leading Women for Volusia-Flagler FAWL

This summer, a new board of directors for the Volusia-Flagler Association for Women Lawyers took the reins of leadership. Pictured from left to right: Lisa Elliot, (director); Rachel Myers (president); Maria McCorkle (treasurer); Sarah Fogle (director); Cynthia Lane (director); and Courtney Kilbourne-Hays (president-elect).

A special place for nursing mothers in Sarasota

Members of the Sarasota Chapter of the Florida Association for Women Lawyers, members of the judiciary, and courthouse personnel were on hand earlier this summer for the official opening of a new lactation room at the Judge Lynn N. Silvertooth Judicial Center in Sarasota. The room offers a pleasant, private environment for nursing mothers and is…

A time to shine for law students and new lawyers

The Hillsborough County Bar Association Diversity Committee’s annual Diversity & Inclusion Networking Social Sept. 7 connected Tampa Bay area law students and new lawyers with attorneys, judges and members of local legal organizations. The event included career advice consultation with many of the areas law firms.

Florida Defense Lawyers host Insurance Symposium

Florida’s first conference for defense lawyers and insurance professionals specializing in bad faith, insurance coverage and first-party property was held at the Sheraton Tampa Riverwalk Aug. 15-16. The Florida Insurance Network Symposium (FINS) was sponsored by the Florida Defense Lawyers Association. Pictured here is FINS Event Chair Matt Lavisky and FDLA Executive Director Ana Ramos. The…

Mix N’ Minnis BBQ

The Fred G. Minnis Sr. Bar Association hosted its annual BBQ on Aug. 24 at Phillipe Park in Safety Harbor. The afternoon of fun and fellowship included law students, members and their families. Many past presidents of the Clearwater Bar Association also attended.

Tallahassee Barristers gather for Gala

The President’s Gala and Scholarship Presentation hosted by Tallahassee Barristers Association was held on Aug. 16 at the Florida State University Alumni Association. In addition to an evening of great food and fellowship, the event featured the presentation of the inaugural Community Service Award.  The Florida Justice Association’s G.C. Murray, II, received the award for…

Pulling the team together in Orlando

Greater Orlando Asian American Bar Association Board of Directors chose Aloma Bowl for its planning retreat on Aug. 25.  The leaders reported on social media they had a “strikingly” great time bowling, singing karaoke, and planning the year’s calendar of events.

Brown Bagging with the Bench

A lunch-time CLE was on the menu in Osceola County Aug. 9 when Judge Gabrielle Sanders and Judge Stefania Jancewicz, two members of the judiciary in the Ninth Circuit, provided a presentation on jury selection. Members of the Osceola County Bar Association hosted the Brown Bag Lunch with the Bench event in the Jury Room…

All Bar Celebration in Jacksonville

The Jacksonville Bar Association hosted other voluntary bars in the area to an All Bar Celebration on Aug. 21. The event brought together more than 100 members of law-related organizations to the JBA headquarters for an evening of networking and fellowship.

Photoshoot at Manatee Bar

Now that digital identity has taken on such an important role in promoting professional abilities, having an impact-making headshot is more important than ever. The Manatee County Bar Association had “picture day” at the MCBA with nationally known photographer, Sally Ullman. The mobile photoshoot gave members the opportunity to get a professional headshot for that…

St. Lucie Bar Kickoff Social

Members of the St. Lucie County Bar Association enjoyed a fall kickoff social on Aug. 27 at the Bradford in Fort Pierce. Local lawyers gathered for the first event of the year under the leadership of Taylor Hoskins as president.

Children Fun Day in Miami Gardens

Members of the Miami-Dade Trial Lawyers Association gathered on July 28 for its Third Annual Field Day at His House Children’s Home in Miami Gardens. Lots of music, games and activities added to the fun of this year’s celebration and fundraising event.  

Diversity at center of OCBA campaign

The Orange County Bar Association kicked off its “This is my OCBA!” campaign featuring the diversity of the organization’s membership. The promo features various members and their view of diversity and inclusion and challenges everyone to make bar activities more reflective of Orlando’s diverse legal community. #thisismyOCBA

Summer Social in Miami

Minority bars in Miami joined together for a summer social on Aug. 21 at Ivan’s Cookhouse. The event created a community of leaders from the Gwen S. Cherry Black Women Lawyers Association; Russian American Bar Association; Malcolm Cunningham Bar Association, APABA South Florida; Haitian Lawyers Association; T.J. Reddick Bar Association; Wilkie D. Ferguson, Jr. Bar…

Working together in Circuit 9

Orlando voluntary bar leaders were in the house for the Paul C. Perkins Bar Welcome Reception on Aug. 20. Together as one are from left to right: Leia Leitner, president of the Greater Orlando Asian American Bar Association; Roger Johnson, president of the Paul C. Perkins Bar Association; Christina Alvarez, president of the Hispanic Bar Association of Central…

A great morning in Sarasota County

Members from the Sarasota County Bar Association Board of Directors joined Boyer & Boyer, P.A., at Meals on Wheels Sarasota on Aug. 28. The group helped package more than 500 meals to be delivered to residents across Sarasota County.

Justice Labarga luncheon honors two attorneys

Justice Jorge Labarga, the first Cuban American to lead the state judicial branch, is the guest host each year at an annual lunch reception sponsored by the Palm Beach County Hispanic Bar Association. Held on Aug. 16 at Kravis Center in West Palm Beach, the event recognized Leadership Award winner Miriam Acosta-Castriz and Member of the…

Planning the year in Palm Beach County

With a goal of quality programming for the new year, committee chairs of the Palm Beach County Bar Association met on Aug. 29 to plan nearly 40 CLEs, community service projects and networking events. These leaders work hard to serve members, foster professionalism and enhance the public’s understanding and awareness of the legal system.

Byers recognized by Past Presidents in St. Pete

An evening filled with joy and laughter best captures the special celebration recognizing the accomplishments of St. Petersburg Bar Association’s Melissa Byers.  Presidents from the past six years (since Executive Director Melissa Byers was hired) came together to celebrate the “3 M’s – Memories, Movement and Melissa” on Aug. 10. The presidents included: Lee Greene,…

Volusia Bar delivers school supplies

Holly Hill School and Starke Elementary in Deland were the benefactors of a back-to-school drive sponsored by the Volusia County Bar Association. The VCBA hosted a bowling night on Aug. 21 where members brought new school supplies to the event. The supplies were delivered later that week.

Joint social a hit for two local bars

The West Pasco Bar Association and the Clearwater Bar Association reports a great turnout and an amazing time on Aug. 28 for the two groups’ joint social. More than 80 judges, prosecutors and attorneys turned out for the event at Flamestone Grill in New Port Richey. Reciprocal memberships are being offered for the two groups.

Mock Trials for Girl Scouts

St Lucie County Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers celebrated law day by sponsoring mock trials for Girl Scouts at the courthouse in Fort Pierce. The case, State v Grimmel, was based on the animated movie, “How To Train Your Dragon 3.” The girls, lawyers, witnesses and judges had a wonderful time with four trials taking place…