As we begin this new fiscal year, I would like to take this opportunity to share a little about myself. I grew up in Arlington Heights and have been married to my wife, Carol, for the past 33 years. Carol and I raised our two children, Lindsey and Kevin, in Arlington Heights. I attended Prospect High School, as did both of our children. As both of our children live out of state, the installation dinner in June provided a welcome opportunity for both Lindsey and Kevin to travel home to Arlington Heights and spend some time together. The above photograph of our family was taken at that time.

After working for a small personal injury defense firm after law school for about two years, I started my own law firm in Mount Prospect in 1984. Our firm focuses on plaintiff’s personal injury cases. We currently have two other attorneys in the firm, Denise Adams and Matthew Hess. Matthew is our association parliamentarian this year.

Our association attorney this year is Michael J. Moran. Mike has offices in Arlington Heights and practices estate planning, probate, and business law. I have known Mike since our high school days as gymnasts at Prospect High School. Attorney Moran is bright and very detailed, and I am confident he will serve the NWSBA well as our association attorney this year.

In preparing to accept the responsibility of President of this organization, some research on the role and purpose of bar associations was in order. My research showed that the two primary roles of any bar association are: 1) to provide quality CLE to its members; and 2) to create a professional community. Therefore, my overall objective this year as President is for our association to excel in fulfilling both of these purposes.

Prior to Installation, I also spent time recruiting what I believe is a strong and dedicated team of committee chairs. With suggestions from other members of the executive committee, Nichole Waltz, Jay Andrew, Michael Rothmann, and Mimi Cooper, I contacted and enlisted the help of members who I believe are willing to spend some of their valuable time fulfilling their committee chair responsibilities to this organization this coming year. The complete list of all of our committee chairs for this year can be found on our website. Thank you to all of this year’s committee chairs for stepping up and accepting this important responsibility.

On July 9th, our annual committee chair orientation meeting was held at Westwood Tavern. The meeting was well attended by a mix of returning veteran chairs and first time chairs. I believe this meeting was a good opportunity for the committee chairs to get to know each other, and to better understand their role and responsibilities as chairs.

With the substantive law committee chairs making a significant contribution of their time to continuing legal education, I encourage all members to become involved with a substantive law committee. With your participation and engagement with the substantive law committees, you will benefit by your involvement, and your participation will help make those committee activities a better learning experience for everyone involved.

I would also like to introduce our membership chairs for this year: Kristina Regal (committee coordinator), Natasha Adler, Robert Boszko, Erin Calandriello, and Frank Ponticelli. If you would like to become more involved with the NWSBA, please contact any of our membership chairs, or any of our very capable NWSBA staff members, Julie Barth (ED), Linda Hamann, or Paula Krueger.

The other primary role of a bar association is to create and build a professional community. I believe that we accomplish this objective by increasing the number of our members who are actively engaged in our substantive law committees, as well as by planning and running, entertaining and well-attended social events. The primary social events of the NWSBA are the golf outing (coming up on Wednesday, August 19, 2015 – please sign up your foursome now), holiday party, judge’s night, dinner meetings, installation dinner, and pub trawlers. Please consider taking a break from your work and come out to one of our upcoming social events and network with your colleagues, judges and other professionals.

I would also like to take this opportunity to thank all of the vendors, affiliates, and members who have sponsored NWSBA events and programs recently. Because of your contributions, the NWSBA is able to hold various events and programs throughout the year. We appreciate and look forward to your continued support. To all of our members, I look forward to working with you this year, and I encourage you to become more involved with the NWSBA, and let the NWSBA contribute to your success!

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