As this is my first blog post, I want to take this opportunity to extend my deepest thanks to the Board of Directors, Ann Wassam and the rest of the ACBA staff. I am honored to serve as your president and am looking forward to a dynamic year. One month into the year, we have already met some milestones — the Court Appointed Attorney Program contract with Alameda County has been signed and our commitment to representing the indigent accused has been reaffirmed. Also, ACBA’s Volunteer Legal Service Corporation will be adding board members and building its capacity to provide pro bono legal services. I am quite pleased that we have reached these goals because it has called on and united the ACBA Board as leaders for 2013 and poised us for a year focused on forward-thinking which will carry us through creating opportunities for our members to be engaged with the Bar. These two major events were set in motion by the out-going president, Sally Elkington. She and Eva Patterson, a renowned social justice advocate, addressed the audience at the Installation and Distinguished Service Awards Luncheon on January 25, 2013. One of the many themes throughout the luncheon concerned being a justice-seeking organization that takes risks because we are endowed with a legacy of greatness. This endowment holds us to be accountable to where we came from.
All of this is to say that our founders in 1877 could not have dreamed the ACBA of today. I choose to believe that our founders were seekers of justice as how they understood it to be in their milieu. I invite all of us this year to continue the legacy of seeking, living and doing justice, in remembrance of where we came, and work with this wonderful group of leaders that I have the honor to be a part of in 2013.
–Rowena Gargalicana, ACBA 2013 President