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April 2016 – Mock Trial Competition, St. Baldrick’s, and CLE

On the snowy evening of February 24, 2016, the NWSBA held its 20th annual high school Mock Trial competition. Judge William Maki, presiding judge of the Third Municipal District Courthouse, once again made the Rolling Meadows courthouse available for this annual event. Mock trial committee chairs, Ken Apicella, Rich Kawaczka, and Frank Serio, along with our capable staff, Julie Barth, Linda Hamann, and Paula Krueger juggled and rearranged last minute cancellations of mock trial teams, judges, and attorneys to pull off another top-notch mock trial competition. Each year the students seem to raise the bar – they have been very dedicated to their study and practice of the mock trial case, and their months of preparation and coaching showed in their performances during the competition this year. The student teams this year were an inspiration to our member attorneys who volunteered their time to act as scoring judges, and I think the judges were impressed as well.

My wife, Carol, and I took the opportunity to head downtown a few Fridays ago to cheer on our friend and loyal NWSBA sponsor, Eddie Reeves (of Jensen Reporting & Litigation Services), as he again this year had his head shaved to raise money for St. Baldrick’s Foundation. This is the 4th year that Eddie has participated to raise money for St. Baldrick’s, and this year he even enlisted his two sons, Max and Jack to lose their hair for a great cause. Eddie and the Jensen team of 6 head shavers raised more than $8,000 this year to fight childhood cancer. Congratulations Eddie, Christopher, Daniel, Alan, Jack, and Max! After some checking I can understand why Eddie and the Jensen team are so passionate about raising money for St. Baldrick’s – 77.4% of all donations to St. Baldrick’s go to fund lifesaving research of childhood cancers. (Way above average – 65% is considered very acceptable.) St. Baldrick’s Foundation funds more research of childhood cancers than any other organization other than the US Government. Since St. Baldrick’s was started by three friends in New York on St. Patrick’s day in 2000, SBF has contributed 178 Million to lifesaving childhood cancer research.

As you know, at the beginning of 2016 we kicked off a new arrangement with IICLE to create and market selected NWBSA live CLE programs online, with our members getting a significant discount off of the IICLE price. We have now expanded our relationship with IICLE – to include an NWSBA member discount on all of IICLE’s books and online products. Watch Newsbriefs, NWSBA weekly updates, and – for more information on how to take advantage of discounts on IICLE products.

Congratulations to Criminal Law Committee Chairs Tom Moran and Dick Adler for putting together
another outstanding Traffic Law CLE seminar last month. Attorneys Moran and Adler as well as their co-chairs, Matt Fakhoury and Moe Ahmad, have rejuvenated the criminal law committee this year, by holding regular monthly committee meetings, which have been creating a lot of interest and involvement in the NWSBA by both younger and veteran members of the criminal bar.

R.F. Wittmeyer

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