Executive Summary: Excitement in the air
Vol. 78, No. 3/ May - June 2022
Mischa Buford Epps
Mischa Buford Epps is executive director of The Missouri Bar.
Are you ready for summer? At my house, summer means enjoying the sunshine with summer camps, walks in the park, and vacations to visit family and friends.
And in my professional life, this season marks the start of several exciting events and changes.
The 2022 Solo & Small Firm Conference is just around the corner, with learning sessions taking place June 9-11, both virtually and in person. As usual, the meeting will be filled with quality, timely programming, including more than 60 breakout sessions highlighting technology trends, litigation or GAL issues, practice growth, and much more.
Perhaps most significantly, this year marks the return of an in-person attendance option for the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic turned the world upside down and shifted meetings to digital spaces. For those who have joined us at a MOSOLO Small Firm Conference in the past, this should be a welcome return to building in-person connections with colleagues from across the state. Here at the bar, we routinely hear from lawyers who appreciate the chance to collaborate in a casual setting and practice solo, together. Learn more at MoBar.org/SOLO.
It’s also time to begin thinking about elections for The Missouri Bar Board of Governors. With roughly half of board members’ terms expiring each year, currently, there are 19 board seats up for election this year. While it’s always difficult to say goodbye to a departing governor, there’s a certain excitement that comes with welcoming new faces to the group, and with them fresh voices and ideas. Serving on the Board of Governors is a unique way to contribute to the policy-making decisions of the bar. Our board members have a variety of practice areas and settings and represent the bar’s 15 geographic districts.
If you’re interested in filling one of these vacancies, you have until June 21 to submit your nomination petition.
Finally, I’ve been keeping a close eye on the Freedom Suits Memorial that’s going up in St. Louis. This monument, set to be unveiled on June 20, will commemorate and honor the hundreds of enslaved plaintiffs who took great personal risk to sue for their freedom in the decades leading up to the Civil War. It will also serve to honor the lawyers and judges who helped them.
While I’ve only seen sketches of the 14 foot-tall, cast bronze sculpture, I’m already inspired by the idea of it standing tall on the east plaza of the Civic Courts Building downtown, a short walk from the Old Courthouse, where so many monumental suits were tried. I know many individuals, legal organizations, and firms from across the state have donated funding and energy to bring this concept to life. That work will be well worth it. Special congratulations to St. Louis Circuit Judge David C. Mason, who first conceived the memorial.
Whatever summer means to you, I hope you’ll make The Missouri Bar and our resources a part of it, whether that means attending a CLE, saving on travel costs through your Member Benefits, or simply signing the petition of a lawyer seeking election to the board.