The National LGBT Bar Association is accepting statements of interest from individuals who wish to join the Board of Directors as an At-Large Member or as an American Bar Association Delegate. Statements of interest and a questionnaire must be submitted to nominations@LGBTbar.org by 5:00pm EDT on October 3, 2011.
The National LGBT Bar Association Seeks Candidates for its Board of Directors including American Bar Association Delegates
The National LGBT Bar Association is an association of lawyers, judges and other legal professionals, law students, advocates, and affiliated LGBT legal and law student organizations. The mission of the LGBT Bar is to promote justice in and through the legal profession for the LGBT community in all its diversity. Similar to other professional associations, the Association provides networking and educational opportunities for its members and supporters. The Association annually appoints the board of its sister organization, the National LGBT Bar Foundation, the entity that sponsors the annual Lavender Law Career Fair and Continuing Legal Education Conference. The Association works within a network of 27 LGBT voluntary bar associations from regions, states and municipalities across the nation, and dozens of LGBT law student associations.
The Association is an official affiliate of the American Bar Association ( ABA ), and as such holds a seat in the ABA House of Delegates. In addition, the Association liaises in an official capacity with many key sections within the ABA , including three seats in the Young Lawyers Division, a seat within the Law Student Division and positions on the Coordinating Committee on HIV/AIDS, the Commission on Women in the Profession and others.
The business and corporate powers of the National LGBT Bar Association are exercised by, or under the authority of, the Board of Directors. The Board is the highest governing authority of the LGBT Bar. In addition, the National LGBT Bar Association Board of Directors appoints members to the National LGBT Bar Foundation Board on an annual basis.
The ABA Delegate to the House of Delegates is a voting member of the Board of Directors and a member of the Executive Committee. The remaining ABA positions are non-voting members of the Board of Directors of the National LGBT Bar Association.
ABA Delegate Opening Positions:
- Delegate to the House of Delegates: LGBT Bar Board Member and Executive Committee Member. Management and oversight of all the LGBT Bar Delegates; represents the LGBT Bar to the House of Delegates and executes its vote. Oversees sponsorship opportunities between the LGBT Bar and ABA ; helps develop joint programs including CLEs for ABA meetings and Lavender Law.
- Council to the Young Lawyers Division National Representative to the LGBT Bar: Represents the LGBT Bar to the YLD Council and executes its vote in coordination with the Delegates to the Assembly of ABA's YLD. Supports sponsorship opportunities and helps develop joint programs.
- Delegate to the Young Lawyers Division Assembly (2): Represents the LGBT Bar to the YLD and executes its vote in coordination with the Delegate to the YLD Council. Supports sponsorship opportunities and helps develop joint programs.
- Representative to the ABA 's AIDS Coordinating Committee: Represents the LGBT Bar to the Committee and executes its vote. Supports sponsorship opportunities and helps develop joint programs.
- Delegate to the Commission on Women in the Profession: Represents the LGBT Bar to the Commission and executes its vote. Supports sponsorship opportunities and helps develop joint programs. Submits a nominee each year for the Margaret Brentwood Award.
- Participate, and possibly chair, various committees focused on specific aspects of the LGBT Bar's Strategic Plan.
- Establishing the basic policies of the LGBT Bar and reviewing any proposed changes.
- Shaping, approving and monitoring the strategy and planning of the organization.
- Personal financial support of the LGBT Bar is expected of board members. That support includes giving personal time and money. Board members also help develop donors, members, and supporters. Further, some board members may lead fundraising efforts within the Development Committee. However, all board members are ambassadors and are expected to attend and support events and help maintain accountability to donors and sponsors.
- Enhancing the reputation of the organization, including promoting positive working relationships and communications with members and member societies.
- Assessing and improving the Board's own effectiveness.
- Candidates with specific background or experience in finance and/or development is beneficial but not necessary.
- The ideal candidate will have prior experience serving on boards of directors and will be able to devote up to three hours per week to participate in LGBT Bar board conference calls and related work.
About the Nominations Committee:
The Nominations Committee is charged with the task of collecting and evaluating nominations for the Board of Directors. The committee proposes a slate of candidates to the Board in accordance with the procedures specified by the Bylaws, following a formal and rigorous review process which may include personal interviews conducted by committee members.
The Nominations Committee will consider the experience and skills of individuals while assessing the overall balance and performance of the Board and its individual members, vis-à-vis succession plans for officers to maintain strong leadership on the Board.
The National LGBT Bar is extremely committed to diversity on its Board of Directors. Factors such as race, national origin, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression and one's professional area (such as whether an individual works in private practice, for a government agency, as in-house counsel or for a non-profit organization) may be considered.
Nominations Process and Timeline:
Individuals must be members in good standing of the National LGBT Bar Association in order to be considered for the position.
October 3, 2011: Deadline for interested individuals to submit statements of interest based upon the questions provided. Statements should include the individual's contact information, their history with nonprofit boards, and their interest in serving the members of the Association. Statements of interest and the questionnaire must be submitted to nominations@LGBTbar.org by 5:00pm EDT on October 3, 2011.
October 4, 2011: The Nominations Committee compiles and submits a list of candidates to the Association Board of Directors for review.
October 14, 2011: Over the following weeks, the Nominations Committee assigns individual Board Members to conduct phone interviews with the candidates.
November 4, 2011: The Nominations Committee selects a slate of candidates for final recommendation to the Board of Directors.
November 11, 2011: The Board of Directors votes to approve or reject the candidate recommended by the Nominations Committee.
Each Board Member is elected by the LGBT Bar Board of Directors for a two-year term which will begin in February 2012. ABA Delegate positions are for 1 year terms beginning in August 2012 in conjunction with the ABA 's Annual Meeting.
The organization's bylaws require that all Directors provide a financial contribution to the organization. Acceptable forms of contributions include, but are not limited to, personal donations, in-kind gifts, or securing significant sponsorships.
The Board usually has five meetings a year, including three in person meetings. The meetings usually last half a day in length and are held in major cities in conjunction with the ABA Midyear and Annual Meetings, with at least one meeting at the LGBT Bar's Lavender Law® Conference & Career Fair. The remaining two meetings are held by telephone.
All Board Members are encouraged to attend LGBT Bar programs and meetings where applicable, and act as "good will" ambassadors for the organization by interacting in a positive way with employers, other legal professionals and the public.
As time permits, Board Members are also encouraged to participate with local LGBT voluntary bar association in their activities. Board Members are covered by a Code of Conduct, must disclose any conflicts of interest and are subject to a background check by the General Counsel. Board members are covered by D&O insurance in the amount of $1 million and by indemnification to the maximum extent allowed by law.
Additional information about the LGBT Bar and its sister corporation, may be found at: www.lgbtbar.org.