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Florida Hispanic Bar Association aims to launch this summer

Senior Editor Top Stories

Vivian HodzAfter several years’ gestation, the Florida Hispanic Bar Association, aimed at being an umbrella for existing local Hispanic bars, plans to launch this summer.

At an organizational meeting February 6 during The Florida Bar’s Winter Meeting, founders worked on organizational plans and sent out a call for volunteers for the nascent statewide organization.

“Everything fell into place in terms of having all the right relationships and support around the state on the effort to launch the Florida Hispanic Bar Association,” said Vivian Hodz, who with Victoria Mesa-Estrada, organized the February meeting.

Hodz and Mesa-Estrada have been talking about the idea since they were classmates five years ago in the Bar’s Leadership Academy. Hodz said they’ve had good support from Florida Bar leaders in their efforts.

The February 6 meeting drew about 25 interested people and they discussed drafting bylaws, seeking members, finding sponsors, setting up the initial governing board, and other matters.

“There are a number of leadership positions available, from our foundational board, our advisory board, committee chairs, and committee members,” Hodz said. “We’re seeking anyone who is interested in serving those positions.”

Anyone interested is asked to send an email to [email protected].

Hodz and Mesa-Estrada also presented a mission statement for the new organization: “The mission of the Florida Hispanic Bar Association is to organize under a statewide umbrella the local Hispanic bar associations in Florida to support, promote, and elevate the success of Hispanic lawyers and judges in business and leadership; to promote diversity and inclusion on the bench and in the practice of law; to support the individual local Hispanic bar associations in their operations and programming; to assist in the formation of additional Hispanic bar associations throughout the state; to aid and advocate for Hispanic communities in need; and to mentor and aid Hispanic law students in preparation to practice law.”

Hodz said she hopes to have a launching event at the Bar’s June Annual Convention with an official start date of July 1.

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