Kenneth R. Keller, President, Greensboro Bar Association

Message from the President, Sept 2016

With service and Bar initiatives and selection of nominees for District Court judgeships, we have a full agenda for 2016-17.  On local service and Bar initiatives, we are continuing our successful book project at Jones Elementary, local CLE/Colloquium offerings, annual fundraiser for Legal Aid, Herb Falk Society, Holiday Party at Elon, Second Chance Expungement project, and a day of service with multiple projects.  As the year progresses, we will feature details on each in this newsletter.

On statewide Bar initiatives, our first speaker will be Will Robinson, the Executive Director of the North Carolina Commission on the Administration of Law and Justice.  Chief Justice Mark Martin convened the North Carolina Commission on the Administration of Law and Justice (NCCALJ) in September of 2015 and charged its members to evaluate the North Carolina judicial system and provide recommendations for strengthening our courts. Commission members were drawn statewide from business, academia, the bar, the non-profit sector, the Legislature, and the Judicial Branch to ensure a well-rounded evaluation of the judicial system.  Each of the members serves on one of five NCCALJ committees studying the areas of civil justice, criminal investigation and adjudication, legal professionalism, public trust and confidence, and technology.

Presently, public hearings are being conducted throughout the state to obtain feedback from the public.  On August 3, 2016, over 100 people attended the hearing held at GTCC.  Overwhelmingly, comments were in favor of raising the jurisdictional age for non-violent juvenile criminal offenses and changing the process by which judges are selected.  The Committee will be taking comments through August 31, 2016 (information and forms are at http://nccalj.org/interim-reports/) and we encourage you to comment.

On the 18th Judicial District Bar front, we will be sending out notices in the near future announcing a joint 18th Judicial District/18H Judicial District Bar meeting to select 5 nominees for the District Court Judge position that has become vacant with the resignation of Judge Enochs.  As part of the meeting, we anticipate that we will also be submitting proposed amendments to both the 18th Judicial District Bylaws and the Bylaws for High Point’s 18H Judicial District to harmonize the Bylaws for both districts, allow notice by e-mail, and comply with section 7A-142 requirements for the selection process.

Your Board of Directors and Committee Chairs are already actively at work and, with your involvement, look forward to a productive year!

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