Spring has sprung! As my excitement grows for the arrival of spring and summer and all that it brings: the promise of new growth, green grass, blooming flowers, and perfect DC temperatures, I realized how closely that mirrors my thoughts about NABL today.
The Essentials was held last week in Denver, the first time with in-person attendees since 2019. There were twice as many in-person than virtual attendees, more paralegals attended than in the past, and the enthusiasm in the ballroom was palpable. We had a talented faculty lineup and an energetic group of attendees. We introduced the five 2022 Frederic L. Ballard, Jr. Memorial Scholarship recipients to the public finance practice and NABL. The Diversity Committee sponsored a fun reception and informative career panel where they announced the launch of a new pilot mentorship program. I am encouraged by the level of interest in the program already. The survey comments reflect that enthusiasm: “This was my first conference and really first step into the public finance field. I found the information provided very helpful to me as a novice.” “It was a great experience overall, very informative, and the speakers were knowledgeable and engaging.”
Earlier this week, The Workshop Steering Committee met in person at the Workshop’s new host hotel, the Chicago Hilton. (You’re going to like the Hilton, especially the extra-large elevator bank!) This dedicated group of panel chairs are well on their way to developing a fantastic conference, with fresh new topics and ideas to improve and enhance the attendee experience. If you are interested in serving on a panel this year, please email your area of expertise/interest, and I will forward it along to the appropriate panel chair. Do you have a topic, issue, or question you would like to have addressed at The Workshop this year? Please send them to firstname.lastname@example.org.
In addition, we are thinking ahead to next year as we are seeking new nominations for the 2022-2023 Board of Directors and the 2022 Bernard P. Friel Medal and The Frederick O. Kiel Awards.
There are even more signs of new beginnings at NABL including three new staff positions. Jared Ellis joined us earlier this month as the Meetings and CLE Administrator, and we will soon be announcing our new Database Administrator and Communications Director. These new folks, along with our current talented and dedicated staff, will work to bring you a fresh, enhanced membership experience. On top of all of this, we are experiencing a membership growth spurt, (nearly 110 new members already this year) and an increase in sponsorship interest and participation.
I am excited for everything NABL has on the horizon; a fresh new brand, a redesigned website, more members-only webinars and content, and the prospect of a growing membership.
To new beginnings; Cheers!