January 20, 2018

The West Virginia State Bar
Young Lawyer Section Executive Committee Meeting
State Bar Center
Charleston, West Virginia
January 20, 2018


  1. Call to Order – Chairperson Smith called the meeting to order at 9:06 am.
  2. Ascertainment of Quorum – Chairperson Smith
  3. Review/Approval of Minutes from October 7, 2017 Meeting
    Mr. Chapman moved to accept the minutes as amended, Mr. Broadwater seconded the motion.
    ACTION TAKEN: The Executive Committee approved the motion to accept the minutes as amended.
  4. Reports of Officers:
    1. Chairperson Smith – reminder to utilize the YLS letterhead and to get approval from an officer for all mailings being sent of the letterhead. Chairperson attended the WV Law Institute meeting in mid-October, the next meeting is March 2018 to discuss public service projects. Also the Chairperson will be attending the Visiting committee at WVU on February 19, 2018 and ABA mid-year meeting in Vancouver.
      Next meeting we will be electing a new secretary, please think about interest in running.
    2. Vice Chairperson Amores – Vice Chairperson will begin ABA meetings rotation in August.
    3. Secretary Cofer – remember to sign in on the meeting roster, this is the official attendance record for this meeting.
  5. Update on Board of Governors’ Meeting – Chairperson Smith
    1. Enclosed under Tab No. 2 are the Minutes of the Board of Governors Meeting held on October 6, 2017.
    2. Enclosed under Tab No. 3 is the Agenda of the Board of Governors Meeting held on January 19, 2018.
    3. Final review of proposed State Bar By-Laws. Enclosed under Tab No. 4 is the proposed draft.
      Notable changes to the bylaws:

      Article 2 – active vs. inactive practice
      5.04 BOG make-up – districts and numbers of delegates, change from 16 to 20 districts. District 8 will change from 4 members to 2.
      Dean explained that Rory had been involved in the drafting of bylaws and that John Hedges is completing the changes. Dean further indicated that there will be some revamping of them.
      The changes also included the changing “African American” seat to “minority” seat.
      Change from Roberts rule to modern rule of parliamentary procedures.
      Only reference to young lawyers was the representation of the chair to the BOG. Article 17.01 – states the existence of YLS in the bylaws was drafted and added.

  6. Report from Mike Mellace, WV State Bar Technology:
    Shared calendar: Mike is creating a shared calendar for YLS to add our district events and meetings. If you have issues with adding information to the group calendar, contact Mike. If you need an event registration, contact Mike.
    The plan is to have an avenue to share chair articles, minutes, and alert pushes.
  7. Report from Kate White, Access to Services Manager, Legal Aid of WV:
    1. Lawyer in the School Project:
      This is a grant program in Charleston school on the westside. They are interested in working with young lawyers in Charleston and would like to expand this into other schools across the state. They are asking young lawyers to help them to identify other opportunities that they may look into working with. Get in touch with Kate White directly to participate.
    2. Pro Bono Portal and Online Training Classrooms:
      This is a grant program with a website where you can interact with five online trainings: infant guardianship, divorce (no kids), adoption, expungement, drafting simple wills, approved for CLE through the bar. They are asking young lawyers to share with their districts. Please know that taking these CLEs does not obligate you to take a case for Legal Aid.
  8. Report of WVU Law School Representative – Ms. Assif:
    First lunch time lecture series is this Tuesday Lawyers Leading the Way, State Bar President Meshea Poore will speak. There will be several other lunch time lecture series throughout the semester. If you have a topic or want to give a lecture series, contact Ms. Assif.
    The Student Bar Association has always done the 5K called the race for justice, it will be around the first week of April.
    Chairperson Smith reported that Tom Cady officially retired at the end of the fall semester from the WVU College of Law. She also noted that the law school is looking for ways to expand its presence around the state, especially in Charleston. They are closer to finding such a location.
  9. Committee Reports and Old Business:
    1. Young Lawyer Education and Mentoring:
      1. Practice Handbook – Mr. Hayhurst:
        No one has provided any updates since the last meeting. Please stay on top of your authors to get the handbook updated. Nearly every chapter needs updating at this point. Mr. Hayhurst will email out the newest list. Chairperson Smith reminded that Jessica Haught said that she will need some time but will have her advanced research class to help with labor and employment. Professor Oliva will be contacted to have her class work on the veterans and military affairs section.
        Additionally, Mr. Broadwater will be looking to update the collections section.
      2. Bridge the Gap – Vice Chairperson Amores:
        Enclosed under Tab No. 5 is the signed Administrative Order amending Bridge the Gap.
        Enclosed under Tab No. 6 is a Sample Program Agenda.
        Enclosed under Tab No. 7 is the Bridge the Gap Committee List.
        Bridging the Gap will go live April 2019. Committees will be assigned at this meeting and all committees are to meet after the close of this business meeting to start planning for speakers and logistics.
      3. Young Lawyer Mentoring Program – Chairperson Smith:
        Make sure you are contacting your districts.
      4. Admissions Ceremonies – Chairperson Smith:
        Did the welcome and provided breakfast at the October 2017 admission ceremony after the last business meeting. Ms. Gibson, Mr. Hayhurst, Vice Chairperson Amores and Secretary Cofer were in attendance. We will need more volunteers for the future admission ceremonies. We will be handling the one on February 7, 2018. Ms. Bias and Secretary Cofer will be present.
    2. Law Student Education and Mentoring:
      1. Lunchtime Lecture Series – Mr. Hayhurst
        Skyler updated in the law student representative report. January 23, 2018 with President Poore (see above). The next is scheduled for March 5, 2018 by the Office of Disciplinary Counsel on the topic of Social Media.
      2. Bar Prep Social Media and Bar Exam Mentorship – Ms. Chapman
        Posting information about completing bar exam applications on the social media fronts. Ms. Chapman will get an application and break it down for future exam takers. Look for updates coming soon.
      3. Bar Exam Box Lunches – Vice Chairperson Amores
        We will not be providing box lunches for the exam in February 2018. Vice Chairperson Amores does not know the plan for the bar this year because of the construction at the Civic Center. Ms. Bias will take over the lead on this program.
    3. Community Outreach:
      1. World Wise Web – Ms. Mallow – no report
        Ms. Brunicardi-Doss did this presentation to 6th graders at Vandevender Middle School in coordination with social studies with the plan to do it with 6th graders every year.
      2. West Virginia Law Adventure – Secretary Cofer – no report
      3. Mock Trial – Mr. Litten
        Mr. Litten stated the new principal is not on board with this program.
      4. Law Day – Chairperson Smith
        This year’s theme is “Separation of Powers” from the ABA. Everyone should be setting up at least one activity in a school in their districts.
      5. Middle/High School Mentors – Chairperson Smith
        Reach out to middle schools and high schools and let them know that that the young lawyers will come in to discuss the profession or volunteer at their schools.
      6. Special Projects/Public Service Committee – Mr. Litten
        Christmas family: raised more than $1600 for our two families. Purchased food, gifts, and clothes. Thank you notes were sent out to the young lawyers and firms that donated funds to the cause.
        Wood County Family Project – lunch and learn with admission fee.
        Diapers Drive: Mr. Litten will send out a blast to collect diapers in each district to be given to pantries/shelters. Take pictures and forward to Mr. Litten by March 30, 2018. All members bring a pack of diapers to the next meeting.
      7. WVU Women’s Business Center and Entrepreneurship – Mr. Lockhart – No update.
    4. YLS Technology Committee – Ms. Bias:
      1. YLS Website – Ms. Bias
      2. Social Media – Ms. Bias

      Ms. Bias announced that we are up to 110 followers on instragram and reminded to please share pictures from your events.

    5. Budget Committee – Secretary Cofer:
      The YLS Budget Committee Liason was not included in any communications or meetings for the budget committee. However, Chairperson Smith had our budget concerns addressed as reported in previous meetings.
    6. Bylaws Revision – Chairperson Smith – Addressed above.
    7. Annual Meeting – Chairperson Smith:
      Judge King is this year’s sponsored speaker. All is taken care of for this meeting.

      1. Young Lawyer of the Year and Mentor of the Year
      2. Annual Meeting Sponsored Speaker
        Deadline is February 1. Committee will be formed to review the received nominations for selection.
        Need nominations for both, but more for mentor of the year. Chairperson Smith will send out ad to members to share with districts and ask Mike to blast out to young lawyers.


    8. District Events for the Current Year – District Representatives:
      District 8 – did a happy hour and had 60 people in attendance.
      District 3 – Ms. Brunicardi-Doss did a lunch and learn in wood county with Robert Albury. Had 30 lawyers in attendance and donated the leftover food.
      Please note that Ms. Bias will ad your flyers to social media if you send it to her.
    9. Other Old Business:
      1. Wills for Heroes Project – Mr. Chapman – no report
      2. Attendance requirements


  10. New Business:
    The official Young Lawyers’ Section letterhead was furnished to the membership with the agenda.
  11. Regional Officer Reports – no report
  12. Next Executive Committee Meeting – April 8, 2018, at The Greenbrier, White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia. Lunch will be served beginning at 11:00 a.m. The meeting will begin at noon. The annual business meeting will be April 9, 2018, at 9:00 am.
    Additional upcoming meetings:

    • July 20-21, 2018: Adventures on the Gorge, Lansing, West Virginia
    • October 12-13, 2018: Stonewall Jackson Resort, Roanoke, West Virginia
    • January 11-12, 2019: Blennerhassett Hotel, Parkersburg, West Virginia
    • April 7-8, 2019: Embassy Suites, Charleston, West Virginia
  13. Adjournment – 1:03

April 2, 2017

The West Virginia State Bar

Young Lawyers’ Executive Committee Meeting

Marriott Hotel

Charleston, West Virginia

April 2, 2017




The following members were present: Matt Harvey, Shannon Smith, Linnsey Amores, Nicole Cofer, Steve Broadwater, Ashton Bias, Brad Wright, Matthew Lockhart, Lindsey Ashley, Blake Belcher, Matthew Bradford, Jamie Chapman, Eric Hayhurst, Kyle Moore, Matthew Chapman, Angela Brunicardi-Doss, April Mallow, Jasmine Morton, Tim Litten, Zak Ritchie, Lori Counts-Smith, Justin Raber, Sam Hess, William Duty, Shana Thompson.


The following members were not present: Kyle Moore, Matt Chandler (outgoing member), Steven Wolfe (outgoing member), Jed Nolan (outgoing member).


  1. Call to Order. Smith called the meeting to order as Mr. Harvey was attending the Board of Governors’ Meeting.


  1. Ascertainment of Quorum. A quorum was established.


  1. Introduction of New Executive Committee Members


  1. District 6 – William Duty
  2. District 7 – Shana Thompson
  3. District 8 – Ashton Bias
  4. District 9 – Matthew Bradford
  5. District 10 – Blake Belcher


  1. Review/Approval of minutes from prior meeting at Waterfront Place Hotel in Morgantown, West Virginia. Chapman made a motion to approve the January 21, 2017, minutes from the Executive Committee Meeting held at Waterfront Place Hotel in Morgantown, West Virginia.  Ms. Cofer seconded the motion.  The Committee voted unanimously to approve the minutes.


ACTION TAKEN: Minutes unanimously approved.



  1. Report of Officers:


  1. Chair – Mr. Harvey


Mr. Harvey reserved his portion of the report for later on the agenda.



  1. Vice-Chair – Ms. Smith


Ms. Smith reserved her report for later on the agenda.


  1. Secretary – Ms. Amores


Ms. Amores had no report.


  1. Update on Board of Governors’ Meeting – Ms. Smith


  1. Minutes from January BOG Meeting


  1. Lawyer Disciplinary Board/ODC


  1. Lawyers Assistance Program


  1. Revisions to Rule 8.3 of the Rules of Professional Conduct


  1. Report of the WVU Law School Representative – Bradley Wright
    1. Public Interest Advocates held its annual live auction on March 23. The auction raised over $27,500. This money will go toward funding student fellowships.
    2. The West Virginia Fund for Law in the Public Interest has awarded three full time, one year, post-graduate fellowships to three members of the 2017 graduating class. These fellows will work in the approved public interest organization of their choice; the award pays $50,000 toward their salary and benefits.
      1. Courtney Crowder
      2. Katherine “Katie” Marcum
  • Brad Wright
  1. Heather Spielmaker has been named the new Assistant Dean for Career Services at the College of Law. Heather is the former Director of the Center for Ethics, Service and Professionalism at Western Michigan University Cooley Law School. She also earned her JD from Western Michigan University-Cooley Law School.
  2. Professor John Taylor was voted Professor of the Year. Jennifer Powell was named Staff Member of the year.
  3. The Class of 2017—made up of 104 students–will graduate May 12
  4. Clinics:
    1. The Veterans  Advocacy  Law  Clinic  and  the  West  Virginia  Innocence Project  Clinic  have  joined  forces  and  created  programming  aimed  at assisting  veterans  incarcerated  at  the  four  federal  prison  facilities  located in Hazelton, West Virginia.
    2. The Clinical  Law  Program  was  recognized  by  the  National  Jurist—the magazine awarded WVU Law second place on a national honor roll of law schools  with  the  greatest  community  impact.  The  honor  roll  is  based  on data of  the  free  legal  services  provided  by  law  school  clinics  in  2015-16. Last  year,  WVU  Law’s  nine  clinics  provided  40,200  hours  of  pro  bono legal services for more than 500 clients throughout the state.
  5. The College of Law has launched the Appalachian Justice Initiative (AJI), a group of law school faculty and staff working to address poverty in Appalachia through legal scholarship,  policy  advocacy,  legal  services  and    AJI’s  mission  is to  develop  programming  and  outreach  projects that  provide  West Virginians  and other Appalachian residents with enhanced legal services and education. Services will  include  workshops,  meetings  and  legal  teach-ins  in  communities  throughout the state..


  1. Committee Reports and Old Business


  1. Practice Handbook – Mr. Hayhurst


Mr. Hayhurst advised new members as to what the handbook is and how it functions.  About 90% of the handbook needs to be updated.  We aim to update it every three years.  If your chapter has not been updated in the last three to four years, then contact the author for them to update it or find a new author.


Ms. Counts-Smith advised that Jessica Alsop is not able to draft partnership law and taxation, but Robert “Bob” Tweel has agreed to draft it.


We need to ask Mike Mellace to send an email to all young lawyers after swearing in ceremony advising them that the handbook is there and providing a link to it.


  1.     Bridge the Gap – Ms. Amores


The Supreme Court did not have a vote on the bylaws at the most recent conference, but it is anticipated that a vote will occur at the April conference.


  1.    Lunchtime Lecture Series – Mr. Hayhurst


Mr. Hayhurst stated that they are trying to get something scheduled for the Spring, but are having a difficult time due to the high volume of activity at the law school during this semester.


  1. YLS Webpage and Social Media Committee – Ms. Ashley


Ms. Ashley updated everyone on what the committee does.  Ms. Bias volunteered to take over this committee and its responsibilities.


  1. Special Projects/Public Service Committee – Mr. Wolfe


Mr. Wolfe was not present at the meeting.  Mr. Litten volunteered to be the special projects/public service committee chair now that Mr. Wolfe’s term has expired.


  1. Update on Bar Prep FB/Twitter Project and Bar Exam Mentorship – Ms. Chapman


Ms. Chapman is going to start working on the Facebook and Twitter pages/groups at the end of May, after law school graduation.


  1. Young Lawyer Mentoring Program – Chairperson Harvey


Mr. Harvey was not present.  Even though the program was not officially launched by former Chairman Foster, Ms. Smith encouraged everyone to reach out to new members of the bar within their regions to offer mentorship or connections to new lawyers.


  1. Bar Exam Box Lunches – Secretary Amores


We are sharing the cost with the WVU College of Law.  We will sponsor one day and the College of Law will sponsor the second day.  Cost is $19 per box lunch plus $100 for the space to serve lunch. The Bar Examiners Office estimates that about 200 people will take the exam, but we will likely only order ~160 lunches.  We are going to attempt to negotiate a lower cost for the lunches due to the number of lunches to be ordered.


  1. Bylaws Revision – Mr. Ritchie and Mr. Wolfe


The bylaws are with the Supreme Court of Appeals for vote.  This committee is essentially just watching the bylaws as they come through the Court.  New members were not appointed to take over this committee due to its inactivity at this time.


  1. Department of Education Outreach


  1. World Wise Web – Ms. Mallow


There are videos, cold call script, introduction, and information on the ABA website for use of representatives.  Members were encouraged to reach out to area schools to present this program.


  1. Update on West Virginia Law Adventure – Ms. Cofer


Ms. Cofer advised that she has received three submissions from Kandi Greter-Kirk at the Supreme Court Administrative Office.  She needs assistance in grading the submissions.  Volunteers were requested.


  1. Mock Trial in Elkins – Mr. Litten


Mr. Litten was contacted by a local high school civics instructor to speak about being a lawyer.  They liked it so much that they requested him to do a mock trial.  He requested fellow young lawyer assistance during the next school year with this project.


  1. Budget Committee – Mr. Wolfe


            Mr. Wolfe was not present.  Ms. Cofer volunteered to serve as the committee member to represent the Young Lawyer Section for the upcoming year.


  1. Young Lawyer of the Year and Mentor of the Year – Mr. Ritchie


Mr. Ritchie served as the committee chair for the nominations.  There were 4 or 5 nominations for each award, and each were qualified.  The award winners were:


Mentor of the Year: Chanin Krivonyak


Young Lawyer of the Year: Laura Omps-Botteicher


  1. District Events for the Current Year – District Representatives


Several members are planning events for their districts.  The process for obtaining the funds for events was explained.


  1. Annual Meeting Sponsored Speaking


The YLS decided to form a committee of three individuals to find and retain a YLS sponsored speaker. Mr. Hayhurst, Mr. Bradford, and Ms. Brunicardi-Doss as well as the leadership will form the committee, which will meet separately.  Members were directed to email information or ideas regarding potential speakers to the committee.


  1. District Events for the Current Year – District Representatives


Representatives were encouraged to hold an event in their areas, and the process of obtaining funding was explained.


  1. Other Old Business


  1. Wills for Heroes Project – Mr. Chapman


Mr. Chapman confirmed that the paperwork was submitted to the Wills for Heroes Project.  Mr. Chapman is getting the documentation from Ms. Morton.  He and Ms. Brunicardi-Doss will be executing the program in their districts soon.  Ms. Morton also agreed to help if needed.


  1. New Business


  1. Implications of House Bill 2892


                        Mr. Ritchie advised that the bill is dead.


  1. West Virginia Entrepreneurship


Mr. Lockhart volunteered to be our committee contact with the WVU Women’s Business Center.


  1. Nomination and Election of Secretary


Ms. Amores nominated Nicole Cofer.  Mr. Chapman seconded the motion.


ACTION TAKEN: Ms. Cofer was elected as secretary by unanimous voice vote.


  1. Regional Officer Reports


Mr. Litten advised that the Supreme Court would be in Tucker County this coming week for LAWS Day and to hear three cases.


Ms. Ashley and Mr. Bradford advised as to the election of a new family and circuit court judge in their districts.


Ms. Mallow discussed that there is a family law judge vacancy.  Several attorneys have applied.


Mr. Broadwater discussed that the newly elected Nicholas County Circuit Court Judge was suspended, and Senior Status Judge Rowe will be filling his seat for the next two years.


Mr. Lockhart discussed the new judges in his district as well.


  1. Next Executive Committee Meeting


July 29, 2017 at Adventures on the Gorge in Fayetteville/Lansing, West Virginia.  Confirmation of rooms required on or before May 25, 2017.


Attendance Requirement:


Ms. Smith utilized this section of the meeting to advise that there will be a required attendance rule.  Each member may miss at most one meeting if they wish to have their trip to the Greenbrier paid for in 2018.


Additional Upcoming Meetings:


October 6-7, 2017: Canaan Valley Resort, Canaan Valley, West Virginia

January 19-20, 2018: West Virginia State Bar Center, Charleston, West Virginia

April 8-9, 2018: The Greenbrier, White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia


  1. Adjourn


Mr. Hayhurst moved to adjourn the meeting, and Mr. Chapman seconded the motion.


ACTION TAKEN: The Committee unanimously approved the motion to adjourn.








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