March / April @theBar

Post authored by Jennifer Byrne

Punxsutawney Phil did not see his shadow this year, but unfortunately that didn’t prevent Chicagoans from suffering through an agonizingly long winter.  Now that we’re finally seeing temps rising this week, does it mean spring has finally sprung?  I sure hope so! As we continue to see the weather improve, it’s time get out from behind your desk and attend one or more of the YLS’ upcoming events.

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Members enjoyed a variety of panel discussions, break-out sessions and a luncheon featuring Jane DiRenzo Pigott in celebration of International Women’s day on March 8, 2019.

March is Women’s History Month and The Chicago Bar Association has been celebrating with a line-up of special events and programs.  On March 8, the YLS co-sponsored the CBA’s first annual Working Women’s Legal Summit. The program provided a look at the current state of women in the legal profession, tips and advice from women leaders from various areas of the legal profession and break-out sessions on topics ranging from career obstacles, to legislation, to workplace policies, and more. Attendees at the Summit also partook in the CBA’s Women’s History Month Luncheon featuring keynote remarks from Jane DiRenzo Pigott of RG3 Group LLC on the gender pay gap and how we can close it. The Summit was extremely well-received and luncheon was attended by more than 100 members and supporters!  A full listing of the CBA’s Women’s History Month events is available here.  There is still time to sign up for remaining events.

The YLS will continue to host monthly socials throughout the spring. Our March social was held at the Adamus Lounge at the Silversmith Hotel on March 14. Thanks to our generous sponsor, Jameson Sotheby’s, complimentary libations were enjoyed by more 50 members. Our April social will take place on Thursday, April 11 from 6-8pm at Stock and Ledger (70 W Madison). Join us and bring a friend for complimentary drinks!

As the weather continues to warm and you become more motivated, you may be interested in doing some pro bono work. I encourage you to consider signing up for the Wills for Heroes Committee, which provides essential estate planning documents free of charge to our nation’s veterans and first responders.  The Committee’s next volunteer clinic will be held on March 23 at the Chicago Police Department Headquarters (3510 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago, IL 60653). Visit the program webpage to learn more and volunteer.

You might also consider attending the Serving Our Seniors Committee’s upcoming event on April 20 at the Center on Halsted (806 W. Addison). The Committee conducts advanced directive workshops in conjunction with the Center for Disability and Elder Law to assist low-income seniors in completing Powers of Attorney for Healthcare and Property and Living Wills. No experience is necessary to volunteer. Please contact Committee Chair, Maureen Loughran, of FMS Law Group LLC at with interest.

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Another great way to network with others while also giving back to your community, is by serving on the board of a not for profit organization. Unsure how to find these opportunities? The YLS Board Match event on April 9 aims to connect lawyers seeking opportunities for board service with not for profit organizations seeking highly qualified candidates for their board.  The event will kick-off with a CLE program featuring a panel of experienced volunteers who will detail the benefits of involvement, and educate you about the obligations, expectations, and potential liabilities of serving on a board. The educational program will be followed by a meet-and-greet with 20+ not for profit organizations. Click here to learn more about the event and to register.

In other news, the CBA’s @theBar podcast team is excited to announce that the show reached more than 30,000 listeners during its first season. The show is back for Season 2 with even bigger guests and hotter topics! February’s episode featured a fascinating, behind-the-scenes look at the John Wayne Gacy case from the perspective of the lead prosecutor, William “Bill” Kunkle. March’s episode focused on the legal profession’s reluctance to embrace technology with a pitch from Legal Tech Evangelist, Niki Black, on why lawyers need to catch up to keep pace in our rapidly evolving economy.  Check out both episodes on Legal Talk Network now and subscribe to the show on iTunes or Google Play to be alerted with new episodes drop!

Finally, the YLS’ Nominating Committee is excited to submit its slate of candidates for election to the Section’s offices for the 2019-2010 year. Click here to view the slate of candidates.

I hope to see you this spring @theBar!

Best wishes,

jen sig

Jennifer Byrne

About the Author:

Jennifer Byrne head shotJennifer Byrne is the Director of the Young Lawyers Section of The Chicago Bar Association, for which she organizes and coordinates the many events its young lawyers enjoy, including continuing legal education and mentoring programs, social events, the CBA @theBar podcast, blog and more. Prior to Jennifer’s work as a bar association professional, she was a domestic relations attorney in Chicago. Jennifer attended law school at DePaul University College of Law and received a B.A. in both English-Literature and Fine Arts from Illinois Wesleyan University. To learn more about how to get involved in CBA’s Young Lawyers Section, feel free to contact Jennifer at or 312-554-2031.


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