DAYL President’s Page

“We’re All Feeling It”

by Justin R. Gobert

As I was emailing with our amazing Executive Director Cherie Harris about whether I would meet the publication deadline for this article (which I didn’t), given what seems like an ever-increasing amount of work and personal responsibilities over the past couple of months, Cherie wisely and empathetically replied with, “we’re all feeling it.” Those few words were an important reminder that we are all facing the challenges of the pandemic and that we should give ourselves (and others) a bit of grace when we don’t feel like we are meeting all of our obligations in a manner that we expect.

Adjusting to working from home, balancing family, children, and work demands, individuals living alone and facing isolation, routines being disrupted, worries about the health of loved ones, uncertainties of current and future employment, etc., all have presented a lot of challenges and required many changes over the past couple of months. But one thing that has not changed is DAYL’s commitment to improving the quality of life of young lawyers and serving our community. I am so proud of the way that DAYL has responded over the past six weeks.

Examples of recent DAYL programming include:

CLEs  

The DAYL hosted two highly successful CLEs in April through Zoom, an Expert Witness CLE offering expert and lawyer perspectives on how to effectively prepare experts to testify and how to successfully integrate experts into case development, and a Trial Skills Boot Camp CLE covering pre-trial conferences, including exhibits, motions in limine, objections to evidence, pre-trial checklists, and teleconference hearings. Both events had well over 100 attendees and received positive feedback from those who attended.

Coffee with the Court

Our Judiciary Committee hosted a Coffee with the Court which included two federal judges and three federal Magistrate judges who offered practice tips and advice for young lawyers who practice or plan to practice in federal court.

Wellness

Our Wellness Committee hosted a program with a fitness coach who shared tips on health and wellness. They are also planning a cooking class event on May 27. This Committee does a great job reminding us of the importance of taking care of ourselves, particularly in times like this, as we can’t take care of others if we don’t take care of ourselves. The Texas Lawyers Assistance Program provides a great service to attorneys needing assistance with substance abuse or mental health issues.

Civic Awareness

Our Politically Aware Committee launched a new podcast. The first episode features an interview with the chief of staff of the Dallas County Health and Human Services addressing Dallas County’s response to COVID-19 and efforts to protect the health of residents.

Service

Our Aid to the Homeless Committee partnered with an organization that provides assistance to pregnant individuals facing housing insecurity and our Elder Law Committee partnered with the Simpson Place Assisted Living Facility to support residents facing isolation as a result of COVID-19.

Additionally, all of our committees have been very active hosting close to 30 committee meetings during the month of April through Zoom.

I could go on, but I hope it is clear that DAYL has continued to provide the excellent programming we have become known for and there are plenty of opportunities for you to get involved. We also want to hear from you if there is programming you would like to see DAYL providing during this time to better support our members.

Finally, I want to thank Cherie for her tireless work and our DAYL Executive team (Whitney Green, Andy Jones, Nicole Muñoz, and Haleigh Jones) for their incredible leadership and support over the past couple of months as we have transitioned to a virtual organization.

 

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