Welcome to your new Wild Apricot website
While representing the Lakeland Bar Association at the Florida Bar Voluntary Bar Leaders Conference back in July, I found myself in a breakout session with approximately 50 other bar association presidents and executive directors from all around Florida. The topic was about membership retention and how most (if not all) voluntary bar associations had seen a drop off in their membership due to Covid-19 and just an overall change in what today’s lawyer is seeking (if anything) from their local bar associations. The speaker took a show of hands to see who in the room came from an organization that had not lost bar membership in the past year and only one hand was raised. Mine. Others in the room were shocked, some seemed in disbelief, and some wanted to know what our secret was. I informed those who prodded me that I didn’t have some great advice to share because we didn’t do anything different here to retain membership. We did what we always do, send out our quarterly publication and remind our current members to renew. That’s it.
In my opinion, the only difference for our organization compared to many others whom I spoke with, is that our legal community here in the 10th circuit is full of lawyers and judges that want to be active in their local bar associations and are fully invested in our local legal community. In today’s world of virtual hearings and zoom meetings, it is easy for many lawyers to never leave their office or home. It is easy to not go to professional event or lunches or meet with clients. 2023 is a time when it is easy to make excuses to stay home. However, our membership retention shows all of your commitment and willingness to stay engaged and actively participate in your local voluntary bar association.
As a law student trying to break into my practice area, a good friend of mine who was a lawyer about 25 years my senior became a mentor to me. I asked him what do I need to do in order to succeed, he said “just keep showing up”. That was some of the best advice I’ve ever gotten and something I attribute a lot of my personal successes to. That advice is probably the main reason why I joined the Lakeland Bar and have been an active member and board member ever since.
In conclusion, I just want to say thank you to each one of you for showing up and continuing to stay invested in your local bar association.
Kevin R. Albaum,