New Jersey State Bar Association - The voluntary Bar Association of New Jersey, serving members since 1899.

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Director of Communications

State Bar Looks Ahead to Annual Meeting and Convention

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ—The New Jersey State Bar Association (NJSBA) will present over 50 educational seminars and New Jersey Supreme Court Chief Justice Stuart Rabner will deliver his inaugural State of the Judiciary address at the NJSBA 2008 Annual Meeting and Convention to be held at the Trump Taj Mahal Casino Resort from May 21-23 in Atlantic City. US District Court Chief Judge Garrett E. Brown Jr. will join Chief Justice Rabner on the program when he speaks on the State of the Federal Judiciary. Close to 40 judges will participate as panelists during the three-day conference including New Jersey Supreme Court Associate Justices Helen E. Hoens, Jaynee LaVecchia and Roberto Rivera-Soto.

The New Jersey State Bar Association’s annual conference signals the beginning of a new year for the association with the inauguration of the 2008-2009 President, Peggy Sheahan Knee. Ms. Knee is the sixth woman in the history of the NJSBA and the first woman from Bergen County to hold that office. She is the first elder law practitioner to serve as President of the 16,000 member association. The swearing-in ceremony will take place during the gala Annual Dinner and Installation of Officers and Trustees to be held on Thursday evening, May 22.

Featuring distinguished New Jersey judges and attorneys as panelists, the NJSBA’s annual gathering will include the Sixth Annual Bench Bar Conference with bankruptcy law, civil trial, criminal law, family law, municipal court practice and probate bench bars. These sessions will be held on Thursday, May 22 and Friday, May 23.


The State Bar Association worked very closely this year with the New Jersey Institute for Continuing Legal Education to carve out an extensive and diverse programming schedule with sessions organized according to tracks based on substantive areas of law. Ten tracks will be offered: banking, bankruptcy and business; elder, estates and tax; family law; labor and employment law; law office management; litgation; municipal court practice; real property; workers’ compensation and miscellaneous. The largest group is the Litigation Track with 15 programs alone that focus on chancery, appellate and civil trial practice as well as criminal law.


The litigation track also stands out as having the most judges among its speakers, many of whom are participating in the civil and criminal bench bars taking place on Friday, May 23. Over 25 judges are scheduled on the litigation track, including, Hon. Michael A. Chagares 3rd Circuit U.S.C.C.A, Hon. Edwin H. Stern PJAD, Hon. Jose L. Fuentes JAD, Hon. Joseph F. Lisa JAD, Hon. Carmen Messano JAD, Hon. Paulette Sapp-Peterson JAD, Hon. Donald J. Volkert Jr. PJCh, Hon. Marc C. Baldwin PJSC, Hon. Peter F. Bariso Jr. PJSC, Hon. Ronald E. Bookbinder PJSC, Hon. Peter E. Doyne PJSC, Hon. F.J. Fernandez-Vina PJSC, Hon. Anne J. McDonnell PJSC, Hon. Lawrence M. Lawson AJ, Hon. John J. Coyle Jr. JSC, Hon. Harold W. Fullilove JSC, Hon. Garry J. Furnari JSC, Hon. Jonathan N. Harris JSC, Hon. Harriet Farber Klein JSC, Hon. Margaret Mary McVeigh JSC, Hon. Robert L. Polifroni JSC, Hon. Siobhan A. Teare JSC, Hon. Sheila A. Venable JSC, Hon. R. Benjamin Cohen (PJSC retired), Hon. Harvey Weissbard (JAD retired), Hon. Stephen M. Orlofsky (US District Court retired), Hon. John J. Gibbons (retired Chief Judge, 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals) and Hon. Herbert S. Glickman JSC (retired).

Judges who are panelists for the family law and workers’ compensation programs and bankruptcy, family law, municipal court practice and probate bench bars include Judge Rosemary Gambardella of the United States Bankruptcy Court, Hon. Donald G. Collester Jr. JAD, Hon. Thomas P. Olivieri PJCh, Hon. Jamie W. Perri PJSC, Hon. Eugene A. Iadanza JSC, Hon. Renee J. Weeks JSC, Hon. Thomas P. Zampino JSC, Hon. Peter Calderone JWC, Hon. Joan Robinson Gross PJMC, Hon. John McFeeley III JMC, and Hon. Peter F. Weiss JMC.

Program Tracks

The Law Office Management Track ties the Family Law Track as the second largest programming segment with six seminars on topical and useful subjects important to the operation of a 21st century law office. Running on Wednesday, May 21 and Thursday, May 22, law office management programs will cover marketing tips and Internet marketing strategies, techniques to improve the firm’s bottom line, and human resources tips and suggestions. An ethics/technology seminar will address email, metadata, e-discovery and more, technology that not only has made offices more efficient, but also created potential ethical pitfalls that previously did not exist. The law office track will also feature an interactive session exploring ways to effectively leverage the processes and software most lawyers and law firms are already using. The Young Lawyers Division is sponsoring a program in this track on managing a law practice.

The six programs of the Family Law Track will address family law ethics, custody and financial planning considerations involving special needs children, negotiating property settlement agreements, business valuations, and trust and estate planning devices to resolve divorce issues. At their Friday morning bench bar, family lawyers will discuss “Judicial Independence in the Family Part.”

The Elder, Estates and Tax Track features five diverse programs that will be held Wednesday, Thursday and Friday at the NJSBA Annual Meeting and Convention. Starting with retirement account withdrawals, the track sessions will cover a discussion of taxation in New Jersey, tips for avoiding malpractice in elder and disability law matters, and a program on evaluating antiques and fine art for estate tax purposes. The probate bench bar will be held on Friday.

The Municipal Court Practice Track will offer a session on hot topics, an Alcotest update focusing on the State v. Chun case, and field sobriety testing. The municipal court practice bench bar, “A View from the Bench: Dos and Don’ts in Municipal Court,” will be held on Thursday, May 22.

Three seminars each are being offered in the Real Property and Banking, Bankruptcy and Business Tracks. The sessions in the real property track will cover redevelopment and environmental issues. The banking, bankruptcy and business track will feature programs on using valuation experts when buying and selling businesses, and advising clients in transferring or selling businesses. The bankruptcy bench bar, “Hot Topics in Bankruptcy,” will be held on Friday, May 23.

The Labor and Employment, and Worker’s Compensation tracks will feature two sessions each. Labor and employment lawyers can attend a program on ethics, e-discovery and ADR for labor attorneys on Friday, and a labor and employment update on Thursday. Workers’ compensation basics will be presented on Thursday and the Annual Meeting of the Workers’ Compensation Section is set for Friday, May 23.

The Miscellaneous Track provides a menu of seven seminars on varying topics that do not fit into the track programming model. They are 30 Years of Casino Gaming in New Jersey, Dog Law: From Bites to Puppy Lemon Law, HIPAA: Everything You Wanted to Know but Were Afraid to Ask, The New Jersey Public Advocate: Voice of the Voiceless, Your Paralegal and the Unauthorized Practice of Law: It’s Your License on the Line, the States of the Judiciaries featuring Chief Justice Rabner and Chief Judge Brown, and Update on School Law Decisions.

The complete NJSBA 2008 Annual Meeting and Convention schedule is available online at Read about the speakers, program descriptions, CLE credit, information on ticketed events, and registration on these pages. Select the Annual Meeting button from the home page.

The New Jersey State Bar Association incorporated in 1899 is dedicated to the continuing education of lawyers and the public, to reforming