Kenneth R. Keller, President, Greensboro Bar Association

Message from the President, Oct 2016

At the September 14, 2016 meeting, the Board of Directors for the Greensboro Bar Association unanimously approved as a Greensboro Bar project the construction of a Habitat for Humanity house.  Our Bar has previously completed construction of seven houses (1992, 1994, 1996, 1997, 2000, 2010, and 2013), and we look forward to the eighth.

Our Habitat projects have afforded us a unique opportunity for positive interaction.  In addition to benefiting the homeowner family and community, these projects allow our members to work together and develop relationships totally removed from the stress and often adversarial nature of our professional lives.  During construction, we work on a common project involving senior and junior members of our Bar, members of the judiciary, clerk’s staff, and Elon law students.

The homeowner will be selected by Habitat for Humanity and will work with us in the construction of the house.  These homeowners are required to attend more than 30 hours of classes on budgeting, home maintenance, and finance to prepare them to be homeowners.  They work a minimum of 350 hours during construction and repay Habitat through interest free loans with a typical monthly payment of $650 to $800 (no more than 25% of their income).  These funds allow Habitat to acquire additional property and build additional homes.

This project will require both labor and funding in the amount of $75,000 to complete the house.  Of this amount, $60,000 has already been committed ($25,000 in anonymous contributions from your fellow Bar members, $25,000 in credit from Habitat for Humanity based on contribution of pro bono legal services from our Bar to the organization over the years, and $10,000 from the Greensboro Bar Association Foundation), leaving the sum of $15,000 to be raised from our membership.

We will kick off the project at our October 20, 2016 Bar lunch meeting, and plan to begin construction in the Spring of 2017.  Please indicate your willingness to contribute funding and/or labor to this project by e-mailing Diane Lowe at jd18gba@greensborobar.org.  Like most undertakings, you will get out of this project in proportion to what you put in – do take advantage of this project to enrich and expand your relationships with members of our Bar!

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