My goals for this year are multi-faceted. I will work to increase the presence and influence of this organization throughout the State of Florida. Simply put, my ABCD for this administration will be Advocacy, Bar relations, Communication, and Diversity.
The VHFCNBA has a strong legacy as an advocacy group here in Florida, and my goal as President is to keep the legacy alive and flourishing. I plan to rally our local membership and affiliates to harness the strength of the VHFCNBA to tackle current social problems in the State of Florida. Our lobbying efforts will include issues such as voting rights and suppression.
A primary goal is the improvement of member services by adding value for our chapter members, as well as our affiliate members. One of the ways we will do this is to offer CLEs that are relevant and useful to our membership, topics that address modern day concerns, and provide tools with which members can utilize to become future leaders in the State.
Four quarterly meetings are planned to take place in Tallahassee, West Palm Beach, and twice in Orlando. Each of these meetings will include a CLE component, with topics ranging from voting rights and improving diversity in legal and judicial leadership roles, to increasing business opportunities with government related entities and practice management.
I plan to immediately address our communications strategy. My intention is to facilitate efficient communication and cooperation among the Virgil Hawkins Bar’s affiliates statewide. Through ongoing and meaningful collaboration with our affiliates, we can identify areas where each can support the other’s mission. In addition, VHFCNBA must have a greater presence in all mediums so that our messaging reaches a broader audience. Our communication platform also presents an opportunity to provide value to our affiliate membership through the promotion of members and events, as well as outreach to law students who are entering the profession.
My vision is to create an unobstructed pathway for our members to serve in significant leadership roles in The Florida Bar, on Judicial Nominating Commissions, and in Judicial Appointments at the State and Federal levels. I plan to collaborate with Florida Bar leadership to address the lack of diversity in these key roles and to create long-term strategies to ensure a pipeline of leaders and volunteers for years to come. That means supporting our current members and also aiding and mentoring our law student membership.