A short report on recent activities
by Frank C Kraemer
The beginning of September hailed not only the beginning of a new school year, but a new year of activities around the Branch. In September CBA staff prepared reference materials for the 60 elected members of Provincial Council and the 72 Section Chairs. We also held orientation sessions for each group. New this year was an orientation session for the Chairs of the Branch’s Standing and Special Committees chaired by Committee Liaison, Margaret Sasges.
There has always been an expectation that members of Council will report to their constituencies after Provincial Council meetings. At the suggestion of several Council members, following the September Provincial Council meeting, I prepared a one-page summary of Provincial Council meeting highlights. The document was circulated to members of Council and posted on the Web site. I hope to continue this practice and to have that document available within two weeks of each upcoming Council meeting.
September also saw the influx of orders for the 2002 Directory. The Branch experienced an extraordinarily large amount of new and changed data that had to be entered into our database. In 2002 we plan to encourage members to provide us with new information on a timely basis so that the project of keeping the database up-to-date will be part of our ongoing work as opposed to part of the Directory preparation.
I am also pleased to report that format changes to the Directory include an increase in both font and paper size (the books will be printed on 8½ x 11 paper). We expect to have the 2002 Directory on your desks in the first two weeks of January 2002.
This fall the Branch has also been very busy receiving and processing Section enrolments as well as conducting the annual CBA-VALA Support Staff Compensation and Lawyer Hourly Rate Survey. If you or your firm have not yet ordered a copy, you may still do so by using the form which is included in this edition of BarTalk.
Finally, I am pleased to report to you that this fall saw the Branch fully staffed following a re-organization of staff responsibilities. This restructuring was done within the existing staffing budget and did not result in any increased cost. In particular, in order to better support the work of the Branch Standing and Special Committees, as well as the coordination of our many volunteer efforts, we reassigned a staff person as Committee/Volunteer Coordinator. That position together with the position of Committee Liaison has substantially strengthened the Branch’s support to the work of its volunteers.
We have also created the position of Logistics Coordinator/Member Services Liaison. The purpose of this position is to organize the many meetings, functions and events held by the Branch, as well as attend to many aspects of member services, such as dealing with members ordering tickets for Canucks (see page 20 for upcoming games), Disney On Ice, Whistler/Blackcomb, as well as ensuring the best rates with our preferred suppliers. The introduction of this position has seen a better focus on the planning of our events, and a continued emphasis on the member services provided by the Branch.
As this will be my last column in 2001, I want to express my sincere thanks to each and every member of the staff of CBABC. They are, to a person, a conscientious and hardworking group who are dedicated to serving our members. I would also like to express my thanks to the Executive Committee members, Provincial Council members, Committee Chairs and the many volunteers who have assisted me in my first year in this position. It has not been an easy year, but it has been one in which much has been accomplished.
I look forward to working with all of you in 2002.
This article was published in the December 2001 issue of BarTalk. © 2001 The Canadian Bar Association. All rights reserved.