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President-Elect Candidates Find Common Ground in Access to Justice, Mentoring

By Jeffery Leon

May 1, 2018

Photo Credit: Jefferey Leon

At the D.C. Bar’s Candidates Forum, Bar members heard from colleagues running for office about their plans for the Bar if elected.

The D.C. Bar held a Candidates Forum on April 25, allowing Bar members to hear from their colleagues running for leadership positions for the 2018–19 term, including president-elect candidates Susan M. Hoffman and Bridget Bailey Lipscomb. 

Hoffman, a partner at Crowell & Moring LLP, called for increased access to justice through pro bono work by engaging the Bar’s Pro Bono Center and local firms.

Citing her entry into Bar service through a voluntary bar, Hoffman also pushed for more engagement with the D.C. Bar Communities and voluntary bars, as well as for utilizing the Bar’s new building and technology upgrades to get more members involved.

If elected, Hoffman said she would work to enhance mentorship and partnership opportunities in the Bar for young attorneys, creating a pipeline for leadership.

“Part of who we are and who we should be is to nurture the next generation of lawyers,” Hoffman added.

Lipscomb, assistant director in the Civil Division Environmental Torts Office at the U.S. Department of Justice, also focused on the need to improve access to justice. If elected, Lipscomb said she would seek to enhance access to justice through pro bono and low bono programs, as well as through community engagement and neighborhood outreach initiatives.

“The importance of legal services and access to justice will always be on my mind, not only for our legal community, but our community in general,” Lipscomb said.

By leveraging its state-of-the-art headquarters, Lipscomb said the Bar’s new home can become a space where voluntary bars, solo practitioners, and attorneys of all backgrounds can meet and work.

Mentoring is another area of focus for Lipscomb, saying she would work to broaden and expand opportunities for mentoring and learning if elected. Online voting in the 2018 D.C. Bar General Elections opened on April 23. Polls close on May 25.

Get to know more about the candidates running for Bar office.