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President's Message
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For those of you who read the January column about the passing of Jeff Van Grack, I thought you might enjoy this post script. A number of Jeff's friends have called and shared their fondest memories. John Joyce, a longtime partner and friend, wanted to do something special for Jeff during the toughest time of his treatment. John arranged a surprise phone call from basketball coach and legend Lefty Driesell. The phone call went something like this...Hello, Jeff this is Leeefty Drieseeelll How are you? Click...Realizing Jeff may not have grasped that this was not a prank call Lefty decided to call back. Jeff don't hang up this really is Lefty. I heard you're a big Terps fan. Jeff looked down at his caller ID and saw that it was a call from Norfolk VA, Lefty’s hometown.  He was near speechless when he realized it really was his hero.  For the next twenty five minutes they talked basketball with Jeff interjecting another apology every few minutes. Priceless!!

Your Help is Needed

     I'm certain that most of you have experienced those annoying membership drives on WETA and other public stations. The station usually presents programming that most people would  find highly stimulating in an attempt to get the viewer to suffer through long diatribes as to how these programs would not exist but for the generosity of "viewers like you".(My apologies to public broadcasting) In reality the premise behind these membership drives is valid. The lifeblood of any association is its ability to attract new members and expand the interest of current members to participate and utilize its benefits and programming.  I hope you won’t tune me out now as I explain how this has relevance to our association.
       As you may have noticed our association has greatly expanded its social offerings. The recent Bar Bash’s and other free happy hours and social activities have been overwhelmingly received with large attendance. Many members have expressed their appreciation and wondered why we don't offer more of these opportunities to meet socially.  These offerings are mere window dressing to our overall plans for the future as you will see.
     Our membership services discount plan now has over sixty meaningful discounts for members and their families at local restaurants as well as offerings at office supply, shredding, process servers, private investigators, court reporting, payroll services and even dry cleaners. In the future we will add to the existing hotel, salon and travel discounts. 
    We have also expanded and reorganized our Lawyer to Lawyer program into the Lawyer Assistance Program.  This committee, once the bastion of last resort for those facing the prospect of review by the Attorney Grievance Commission, is now more proactive than ever. Its leaders have reached out each committee and section as well as the membership at large in an effort to provide meaningful vital support before a crisis arises.
      CLE and educational offerings have been expanded with greater and more topically relevant programming.
      Our charitable and community service programs including Drug Court are now receiving the recognition they have long deserved. Pride in membership is at an all-time high with members now realizing the real and tangible benefits of membership.
      It is now time to spread the word to our nonmember partners, associates and lawyer friends of these benefits and the satisfaction of membership. With the hard work and assistance of a task force of recent admittees we have compiled a list of the email addresses of Montgomery County attorney residents who are not currently members.  In the next thirty days, a letter will be sent inviting these nonmembers to consider joining our association.  As with all things, personal contact and endorsements are the best means of creating interest.  We ask that you take a few moments to contact potential members and invite them to register online at the association’s web site.  Paraphrasing a Winston Churchill quote, “Never have so few, done so much, for so many.”  Please take this opportunity to help us expand our Association to help so many others in our community.  It is all up to “members like you.” 

Mal Snyder