One hundred judges, attorneys, and law students gathered at the University of Miami Bank United Center recently for the Partnership for Professionalism bi-annual meeting and dinner. Now in its 22nd consecutive year, the program brings law students, alumni, and members of the Bench and Bar together each semester for an informal roundtable discussion.
At each table, a judge, three attorneys, and six students are seated together. Prepared scenarios of civility, ethics and professionalism are discussed at each table, followed by summations by the students coordinated by Miami Law alumni.
Judge Stanford Blake of the 11th Judicial Circuit for Miami-Dade County gave the participants a mix of humor and thoughtful remarks during his summation. Also contributing as alumni facilitators were Scott E. Byers, Esq., from the Miami office of Jorden Burt; Christopher DiSchino of Roca Gonzalez, P.A., in Miami; Andrew M. Loewenstein from the West Palm Beach office of Cole Scott & Kissane, P.A.; Christopher Malek, Esq. of Perry & Neblett in Miami; Jane Muir, Esq. of Grinberg Muir Law in Coral Gables; and Steven D. Pinkert, Esq. of the Pinkert Law Firm in Dadeland.
Members of the bench who participated in the April dinner included judges Antonio Arzola, Stan Blake, Philip Bloom, Pedro Echarte, Ivan Fernandez, Lester Langer, Celeste Muir, Linda Singer Stein, David Tobin and David Young. Additionally, 30 attorneys volunteered their time and talent for the table and floor discussions, including Michael Cohen, Esq. and Judith Richardson Rushlow, Esq. of Florida Lawyers Assistance, and William Mulligan, Esq., Jacqueline Needleman, Esq., and Daniela Rosette, Esq. of the Miami office of The Florida Bar.
Scenarios were suggested from real-life situations and were offered by Michael Cohen, Esq. of Florida Lawyers Assistance, Daniela Rosette, Esq. of the Miami office of The Florida Bar, Ron S. Lowy, Esq. of Lowy and Cook in Miami, Clayton Hackney, Esq. of Dibello, Lopez & Castillo, P.A. in Coral Gables, and Scott E. Byers, Esq. of Jorden Burt in Miami.
The coordinator of the Partnership for Professionalism program is Assistant Dean for Professional Development William P. VanderWyden. Alumni are encouraged to contact him for suggested ideas and for participation in future meetings: firstname.lastname@example.org. Many of the judges and attorney participants are veterans of the programs attended while they were students at Miami Law.