Thanks to the tremendous efforts of all the sections during the pandemic along with many new benefits and offerings, MSBA members have engaged with the organization at vastly increased levels. Tens of thousands of hours of virtual gathering and programming have added real value being part of the MSBA, and has helped us achieve 105% of our annual membership attraction and retention goals this past year. In fact, we have already reached 98% in this new Bar year. I had hoped to share this great news with you in person as we sought to return to in-person and hybrid events, but unfortunately the COVID-19 Delta variant has made that difficult.
At the September 13 Board of Governors meeting, the Board discussed the impact and risks associated with exposure to the Delta variant and what action we as an organization should take in response. Prominent in the board’s considerations was the fact that the variant has brought on a surge in COVID-19 cases in Maryland as elsewhere.
Consequently, in order to reduce the risk of COVID-19 infection to MSBA members, our families, colleagues, and communities, the board determined that any new or to be planned MSBA activities be fully virtual through December 31, 2021. Activities that have already been scheduled as in-person and hybrid prior to this notification can proceed but should be reconsidered as possible.
I share your hope that this pandemic will end much sooner than later. Please be assured that the Board will continue to monitor the pandemic and adjust policy as warranted. In the meantime, we must take those actions that are best to help ensure the continued strength of the MSBA, and the safety of its members, our loved ones and the communities where we live and work.
Natalie McSherry, Esq.
Maryland State Bar Association