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         President's Message


This is the final President’s message I will be writing to you.  I’d like to take this opportunity to express what a privilege it has been to serve as your bar president and also to thank the many people who have helped us through this most unusual year.

    Our Board really stepped up their game to organize creative but safe events for the LBA members.  And, unlike most organizations, the Board continued to offer in-person luncheon meetings that were specially planned to also be Covid-safe.  The Board also encouraged participation via Zoom.  I had never heard of Zoom until the pandemic struck last year.  What would we have done without technology?

I would also like to thank those who stepped up for me personally.  An unfortunate set of unrelated circumstances led to my inability to participate in three of our monthly luncheon meetings.  Our President-Elect, Melodie Lopez, and our Treasurer, Kevin Albaum, filled in for me on very short notice to seamlessly lead the meetings.  Thank you!

I’d also like to thank again our previous, exceptional speakers – the Honorable Ralph Artigliere, Florida Bar Counsel, Ken Bryk, Lakeland Chief of Police, Ruben Garcia, and Judge Robert Fegers.  In March, our members were privileged to learn from Board Certified Elder Law Attorney, Travis Finchum.  I heard terrific reviews of Travis’s CLE presentation. 

Last week, we heard from Chief Judge Ellen Masters with an update about the state of the Tenth Judicial Circuit, and she presented our “Superhero” Judicial Assistants with special gifts from the LBA in recognition of their wonderful service to our Circuit.  Additionally, the LBA presented a check for $2500 - the proceeds from our annual charitable golf tournament - to Heart of Florida Legal Aid Society.  A big thank you to LBA Secretary, Nicholas Sellars, for organizing and running the successful golf tournament even in the midst of the pandemic.          

We have one more fun and delicious evening planned for our members on April 22nd at the Publix Aprons cooking school where we will learn all about Cajun cuisine.  I hope to see a full house for, "It’s Cajun, Not Burnt." 

In May, at our final LBA luncheon meeting of the year, we are pleased and privileged to welcome Florida Bar President, Dori Foster-Morales, for our Law Day luncheon meeting.  A big thank you to Rick Nail for making these arrangements!  In addition to hearing from Ms. Foster-Morales, the LBA will be presenting the Jere Devane and Golden Badge awards and installing the 2021-22 LBA Officers and Board.

 Lastly, I can’t end my term as President without recognizing the outstanding contributions of our Executive Director, Lisa Oliver.  Lisa is the engine that keeps the LBA running.  I really don’t know where we would be without her hard work and dedication to our organization.  Thank you, my friend, for keeping me on my toes and making my job this year so much easier!

I wish you all a happy summer and hope to see you in person next fall.

With warm regards,

Barbara Davis



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