CONTACT: Janet S. Eveleth, (410) 685-7878 or (800) 492-1964


Harry S. Johnson will be installed as President of the Maryland State Bar Association (MSBA) on June 14, 2003, during the MSBA Annual Meeting in Ocean City, Maryland.  Johnson’s installation marks a significant milestone for MSBA as he is the first African-American to serve as President of this professional, volunteer association of 20,500 members.   Johnson, a partner in the Baltimore law firm Whiteford, Taylor & Preston, will lead MSBA for the next twelve months.

Johnson will be joined by newly elected MSBA officers: President-Elect Cornelius Helfrich, a solo practitioner in Harford County; Secretary J. Michael Conroy, Jr., a partner in the Gaithersburg law firm Conroy, Ballman & Dameron; and Treasurer Edward J. Gilliss, County Attorney for Baltimore County.  As MSBA President, Johnson hopes to encourage lawyers to be leaders in the community, enhance the involvement of minorities in the legal profession and enhance integrity to the practice of law.

An outstanding leader in Maryland’s legal community, Johnson is known for his commitment to public service and his high standards of legal ethics and professionalism.  As bar leader, he will focus on communication, encourage more attorneys to be “lawyer legislators,” and examine MSBA’s history, using past issues and traditions as a foundation to chart the Association’s future direction.

A graduate of the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, Johnson received his Juris Doctorate from the University of Maryland School of Law in 1979.  He was admitted to the Maryland Bar and immediately joined Whiteford, Taylor & Preston as an associate, becoming a partner in 1986.  Johnson serves as a mentor to MSBA’s Leadership Academy and an instructor for the Association’s Professionalism Course and MICPEL, MSBA’s continuing legal education program. 


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