The Iowa State Bar Association Young Lawyers Division "Ask An Advocate" is anonymous listserv service available to all YLD members. Ask An Advocate allows Young Lawyers the ability to email inquiries anonymously and receive feedback. The list is moderated by ISBA staff and all inquiries and responses are only shared after identifying information has been removed.
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This committee is responsible for organizing the Bridge the Gap seminar held in Des Moines each spring. Bridge the Gap is a two-day "nuts and bolts” seminar that provides information on a wide variety of topics at introductory to intermediate levels. The seminar is unique in that, for a low fee, one can obtain all federal, state and ethics CLE requirements. Bridge the Gap is one of the largest annual seminars sponsored by the Iowa State Bar Association.Members of the Bridge the Gap Committee serve on one or more sub-committees to assist in arranging and hosting the seminar. Committee members are required to attend two dinner meetings, September and November, in addition to completing their sub-committee projects. Attendance at the entire seminar to assist in its presentation is also required.
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Comunications Ad Hoc Committee
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Disciplinary Ad-Hoc Committee
The ISBA YLD Diversity Committee works to improve diversity in the legal profession. The committee focuses its work on retaining lawyers with diverse backgrounds, building a diversity pipeline to the legal profession, and informing the broader legal community about issues surrounding diversity and inclusion.
The Executive Council of the Young Lawyers Division is the decision making body of the YLD. It consists of one representative from each Judicial Election District in Iowa, Judicial Election Districts having more than 100 Division members in good standing are eligible to have one additional representative for each 100 additional Division members in good standing, with such representatives to be chosen from the Division members in each Judicial election District.
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The ISBA YLD Justice Fore All (Golf) Committee plans up to three golf tournaments per year. Planning includes securing sponsorships and prizes, organizing teams and helping with the events themselves. Proceeds from the tournaments are donated to legal services nonprofits in Iowa.
The ISBA YLD Know Your Constitution committee offers one of the best and most-publicized, law-related educational programs in the State of Iowa. The committee organizes and implements the annual Know Your Constitution contest. Each fall, a quiz with fifty multiple choice questions and one essay question is distributed to high school students all over the state. The students are given several weeks to complete this open-book test. After all quizzes are returned to The Iowa State Bar Association office, the committee grades the quizzes to select 100 finalists, one from each Iowa House district. In a typical year, approximately 2000 high school students participate in the contest. The 100 finalists are invited along with their teachers to an awards luncheon in the Des Moines area. Of the 100 finalists, five students are chosen at random and awarded an all-expense-paid trip to Washington, D.C., for the students and their teachers.
The ISBA YLD Law Related Education Committee sponsors programs to provide members of the public with an understanding of basic legal concepts and legal procedures in the Iowa judicial system. In recent years, this committee's primary focus has been on the ISBA Mock Trial Program and the "We the Jury Program". Each year, this committee co-sponsors the Iowa Junior and Senior High Mock Trial Competitions as well as the National Intercollegiate Mock Trial Competition.
The ISBA YLD Law Student Committee strives to bridge the gap between law school and first years of practice in the legal profession. The committee works with the state’s law schools to engage students in bar activities and pro bono work.
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The goal of the ISBA YLD Litigation Committee is to educate young attorneys regarding litigation in Iowa state courts. The committee meets monthly in Des Moines. Out-of-town committee members may participate via telephone conference.
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Long Range Planning
The ISBA YLD Membership Committee helps to identify where the ISBA can add value to membership and works to increase YLD participation. The committee assists in planning and organizes several YLD social events; including the welcoming celebration held at ISBA Headquarters following each new attorney swearing-in ceremony.
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The ISBA YLD Mentoring Committee plans and coordinates the ISBA YLD Mentoring Program for ISBA attorneys who are admitted to practice five years or less. The mission of this program is to provide new lawyers with a helpful, independent resource in their first years of practice. Participants accepted into the program are matched with an experienced, active ISBA member available to provide guidance to the participant in such areas as ethics and professionalism, practice and law office management, general lawyering skills and business/client development.The committee is responsible for reviewing and developing criteria for the Mentoring Program, and evaluating and screening proteges and mentors.
The ISBA YLD Professional Development Committee works to enhance the development of newly admitted lawyers through CLE opportunities. These opportunities provide some practical and, in some cases, hands-on training about the practice of law. They also provide a setting in which young lawyers can cultivate and develop a network of professional relationships.
The ISBA YLD Services to the Elderly Committee is a volunteer group of lawyers whose primary focus is to ensure that our current and future attorneys are prepared to meet the legal needs and protect the rights of aging and older Iowans. The committee has a history of successful projects including the Legal Handbook for Older Iowans and the Guardianship and Conservatorship Training Video and Handbook. These projects were recognized by the ABA and the committee was invited to present at The National Affiliate Outreach Projects. Members of this committee are also available to provide community education on legal topics that effect the elderly and have presented at the Governor's Conference on Aging and the Governor's Conference on Alzheimer' s. The committee is also striving to ensure the future availability of elder law attorneys by working with both law schools in Iowa.
The ISBA YLD Student Debt Task Force Committee was established to find concrete solutions to address the problem of law student loan debt. The task force committee is charged with creating a comprehensive debt-relief program for young attorneys and exploring other ways in which the crisis can be addressed.