From the Chair 

            As I write this article our Country is at war in Iraq.  Our hearts and prayers are with the brave men and women risking their lives to protect us and to bring freedom to a repressed nation.  Our hearts and prayers are also with the families who have lost loved ones in the fighting.  Such noble and heroic sacrifices have been made by so many and I know that I speak on behalf of the entire Section in saying thank you to all the men and women in our armed forces and to their families. 

My year as Chair is coming to a close, and, as I look back on the Bar Year, I cannot help but be humbled by the hard work and contribution that so many have made to make this a remarkable year.  My sincerest and heart-felt thanks goes to all of the members of Section Council and the Section as a whole who generously gave of their time and talents.  As I look forward, I am also very excited about the coming year, because I know that Suzanne Lewis, Chair Elect, has tremendous plans.  Suzanne and I worked together for several years on the Young Lawyers Section Public Service Committee and I know that she will be committed and dedicated to the job at hand and that the Section will rise to new heights under her leadership. 

I wanted to share one of our proudest accomplishments this year with you, which is the creation of a new annual award for pro bono service by a young lawyer.  As I reported to you at the beginning of the year, the Young Lawyers Section has been taking steps to increase the awareness of the Section with respect to the various pro bono opportunities available and to increase participation of Young Lawyers Section members in pro bono activities.  As part of that effort, we created a new Special Committee to focus on pro bono.  Now, in conjunction with the Pro Bono Resource Center, the Young Lawyers Section has created the, “Alex Fee Memorial Pro Bono Award,” which will be presented at the Maryland State Bar Association Annual Meeting in Ocean City to the Young Lawyers Section member who has performed outstanding pro bono service.  The Award is named in honor of Section Council member Ed Fee’s late son.  Ed Fee has been a member of the Young Lawyers Section for years and has served in a number of capacities from Editor of the Advocate to Executive Committee member.  He has also chaired both the Baltimore County Bar Association Young Lawyers Section and the Baltimore City Bar Association Young Lawyers Division.  Ed has also been a tireless advocate for pro bono and has provided hundreds of hours of pro bono service.  His dedication to the Bar and to pro bono earned him the President’s Award for outstanding young lawyer from the Baltimore City Bar Association and the prestigious Ed Shea Professionalism award given by the Maryland State Bar Association for the young lawyer who demonstrates the highest level of professionalism.  Ed and his wife, Lisa Barkan, an Assistant Attorney General, lost their two and half year old son in 2001.  Ed and Lisa’s loss was shared by all of the Young Lawyers Section members who knew them and naming this annual award in honor of their son, will help us all to recall how precious life is and how important it is to cherish the time we have.  It is also a fitting tribute to Ed’s commitment to young lawyers and the Bar.  The first award will be presented this year at the Annual Convention. 

The state of the Young Lawyers Section is strong.  We are the largest Section of the Maryland State Bar Association and the most active.  However, in order to remain strong, the Section needs all of its members to participate and to take advantage of the many benefits offered by the Section.  I wish each member of the Section the very best in his or her career and I look forward to working with you in the future.

Michael A. Stover, Esq., Chair 

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