The Maryland State Bar Association Board of Governors and
officers met at the location, date and time indicated above. There were 30
members of the Board of Governors present, including all of the officers. Guests
attending the meeting included William H. Meserole, Jr., President-Elect of
the Queen Anne’s County Bar Association. In addition, Paul Carlin, Executive
Director, and key members of his staff were in attendance.
President Dick Sothoron called the meeting to order at approximately
1. The Minutes of the Board of Governors meeting of February
13, 2001 were read and approved.
2. Dick Sothoron gave the President’s report.
a. He reported that the travel portion of the MSBA Mid-Year
Meeting was very successful. All of the members, their families and guests
had a wonderful time. He thanked Kathy Kelly Howard, John Debelius, Lisa
Mervis and Rick Jaklitsch for all of their time, effort and work. He noted
that the CLE programs were very informative and well attended. He thanked
the sponsors who assisted us with the program. He also reported that he and
several other MSBA representatives attended the ABA Mid-Year Meeting in San
b. He discussed the notice sent to all MSBA Section Chairs
advising them that the MSBA Board of Governors had created two Presidential
Best Section Project Awards which will be presented at the June, 2001 MSBA
Annual Meeting. One award will recognize the best Section program benefiting
its members and the other award will recognize the best Section program benefiting
c. He reported that Chief Judge Robert M. Bell had appointed
Buz Winchester, MSBA Director of Legislative Relations, to the Expanded Taskforce
on Public Access to Court Records. He noted that while there is hardly anyone
more qualified to represent the MSBA’s interests in this matter, the
appointment was unilateral and made without input from the MSBA.
d. He reported that Asher M. Rubin, Senior Corporate Counsel
for Guilford Pharmaceuticals, Inc., sent a letter to the MSBA requesting
the establishment of a Biotechnology Committee. Mr. Rubin noted that there
does not appear to be any place within the organizational structure of the
MSBA where a biotechnology oriented group will fit. The Board approved establishing
a new Biotechnology Committee with between ten and fifteen members. Mr. Rubin
will be contacted to discuss the mechanics of how this Committee should be
formed and who should be members.
e. He reported on the letter from Chief Judge Robert M.
Bell thanking the Association for its assistance at the Conference of Chief
Justices. He forwarded a Resolution from the Conference of Chief Justices
expressing its most sincere and special thanks to the MSBA for co-sponsoring
the reception and dinner at the Clarence M. Mitchell, Jr. Courthouse on January
f. He discussed a letter from Thomas M. Meachum, Chair of
the MSBA Appointments Committee, nominating William Riddle of Cecil County
to the Maryland Volunteer Lawyer’s Service Board of Directors. After
discussion, the Board approved Mr. Riddle’s appointment.
g. He discussed a letter from Randy J. Holland, Judge of
the Supreme Court of Delaware, soliciting nominations for the American Inns
of Court Professionalism Award in the Fourth Circuit. After discussion, the
Board nominated retired Court of Appeals Judge Lawrence F. Rodowsky.
h. He discussed the request of Stephen Harris, Public Defender
for the State of Maryland, that the Board support his efforts to obtain parity
of salaries between the Public Defenders Office and the Office of the Attorney
General. President Sothoron noted that pending House Bill 1340 and Senate
Bill 886 deal with the issue of parity. The Board approved a motion to support
i. He called on Gerald W. Heller, Jr. who discussed the
draft of a letter to be sent to Chief Judge J. Frederick Motz of the United
States District Court for the District of Maryland from the Federal District
Court Liaison Committee and the MSBA Litigation Section concerning the proposed
policy on public release of juror information. The Board approved sending
j. He introduced William H. Meserole, Jr., President-Elect
of the Queen Anne’s County Bar Association.
3. Paul Carlin gave the Executive Director’s report.
a. He reported that the total MSBA membership count as of
the date of the meeting was 18,991, including 48 resignations, 1,033 dropped
members, 3 deceased members, 17 new members, and 12 reinstatements. The Board
approved the resignations noted in the Executive Director’s Report.
b. He reported that President George W. Bush, in his budget
submission to Congress, recommended that the Legal Services Corporation be
funded for fiscal year 2002 at the current funding level.
c. He discussed the request for proposal for banking services,
which the staff had submitted to a number of banking institutions to check
the market for optimal costs for the services received by the MSBA.
d. He reported that he had reached an affinity agreement
with Citizens Conferencing to provide teleconferencing services to MSBA members
at very reasonable rates. After discussion, the Board approved the agreement
with Citizens Conferencing.
4. Jim Nolan gave the Secretary’s Report. He reported
that the minutes of the Executive Committee meeting held on March 13, 2001
were substantially contained in the agenda for this meeting.
5. Harry Johnson gave the Treasurer’s report.
a. He reported the following for the MSBA as of February
28, 2001: total dues income of $2,200,085.12; total income of $3,176,583.71;
total expenses of $2,027,224.85; and total surplus of $1,149,358.86. He also
reported that dues income representing 101.40% of the MSBA budget had been
collected to date.
b. He discussed two budget amendment requests approved by
the Budget and Finance Committee on February 28, 2001 and recommended by
the Executive Committee. The Board approved the requests of the Section of
Solo and Small Firm Practice to add $500.00 to its budget for a special project
and the Section of Delivery of Legal Services to add $3,400.00 to its budget
for programs and meetings.
6. Pam White gave the President-Elect’s Report.
a. She reported that Governor Glendening had made a number
of significant judicial appointments of women and minorities to various Circuit
and District Courts. She further discussed in brief the judicial selection
process in Maryland. She indicated that the Select Committee on Gender Equality
will be putting on a seminar in the near future for the Judicial Selection
Committees from around the State on the qualities of a good Judge.
b. She discussed and the Board approved co-sponsoring the
National Conference for Minority Lawyers that will be held on June 18 and
19, 2001 in Washington, D.C.
c. She discussed the impact of the proposed Conditional
Diversion Rules on MSBA members and stated that a special conference will
be held on March 26, 2001 to discuss this issue.
d. She indicated that the 2002 Mid-Year Meeting will be
held at the Flamingo Hilton Hotel in Las Vegas from February 17-21, 2002.
e. She noted that Baltimore Magazine had featured
her cats, Percy, Cat Ripkin, Tucker and Samson in the March 2001 Edition.
7. Reports of Standing Committees.
Buz Winchester, Director of Legislative Relations, reviewed
the MSBA Legislative Report to the Board which is attached to these minutes
as Exhibit 1.
8. New Business.