Bar Presents President-Elect Candidates at Candidate Forum

By Jeffery Leon

May 7, 2019

From left to right: President-elect candidates Charles C. Lemley and Geoffrey M. Kleinberg, incoming D.C. Bar president Susan M. Hoffman, President Esther H. Lim, and CEO Robert J. Spagnoletti.

On May 1 the D.C. Bar formally introduced to members its 2019 nominees for president-elect at a candidate forum and open house at the Bar’s headquarters. Voting in the Bar’s general and Communities elections is now underway. The last day to vote is Friday, May 24.

In their respective speeches, Geoffrey M. Kleinberg of Kellogg, Hansen, Todd, Figel & Frederick, P.L.L.C. and Charles C. Lemley of Wiley Rein LLP spoke about their goals for the Bar if elected.

Kleinberg shared that he has served with the Bar over the past 18 years, starting with its Legal Ethics Committee. If elected, Klineberg said he would work to increase the Bar’s commitment to pro bono service.

“An appellate pro bono program would combine the three core missions of the Bar: to enhance access to justice, improve the legal system, and empower lawyers to represent their clients in the most effective way possible,” he said.

Lemley, who served as cochair and chair of Wiley Rein’s Diversity and Inclusion Committee, wants to focus on increasing access to justice for all and push to ensure the Bar is more diverse and inclusive by engaging voluntary bars and legal service providers.

“We exist to see justice done, and we can’t do justice unless we provide proper support to the great people who are working out there every day to provide access to justice,” Lemley said. “We have the greatest legal service community in the world here in D.C. These attorneys do heroic work, but they can’t do it by themselves.”

The candidate forum featured remarks from D.C. Bar CEO Robert J. Spagnoletti, D.C. Bar President Esther H. Lim, and Lim’s successor, Susan M. Hoffman, who will be inaugurated as president on June 11 at the Bar’s Celebration of Leadership.

Hoffmann, a partner at Crowell & Moring LLP, reflected on her past year as president-elect, thanking Lim for her mentorship, celebrating the Bar’s myriad programs, and expressing excitement for her upcoming term. Hoffman urged Bar members to “take advantage of the Bar’s opportunities to get outside of your lane and get to know more of your Bar colleagues and the wealth of voluntary bar associations” in the District.

In addition to voting for a president-elect, eligible Bar members will also elect a secretary, treasurer, members of the Board of Governors, and delegates to the ABA House of Delegates, including one for the under-36 seat.

Results of the election will be announced on the Bar’s website and during the Celebration of Leadership at the Grand Hyatt Washington.