Setting the Gold Standard for 50 Years
Enhancing access to justice. Improving the legal system. Empowering lawyers to achieve.
Since 1972, the D.C. Bar has been setting the gold standard for legal excellence. Explore our history and get involved to help us continue to raise the bar for the next 50 years.
Service. Integrity. Leadership. Inclusion.
1972 – 2022
Explore Our History
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Washington Lawyer Magazine
Programs & Events
Throughout the year, we host special programs and events to bring our members together
to celebrate, network, learn, and deepen their engagement with the Bar.
Join us for our upcoming Signature Events.
In 1972, the Model Rules of Professional Conduct, later to be adopted in some form by all U.S jurisdictions, was barely a twinkle in the ABA’s eye. Fifty years later, the old Code is gone and forgotten, but the legal ethical dilemmas it had failed to solve have either persisted or been replaced with new ones. For as the profession develops and evolves, so do legal ethics quandaries, and the ones that linger are important, and even perilous. In celebration of the 50th anniversary of the D.C. Bar, this new and thought-provoking class will challenge those who attend with the most controversial and intriguing legal ethics developments over this period. This interactive program has been conceived and will be conducted by Jack Marshall, Esq, president of ProEthics Ltd., who has presented CLE ethics programs for the D.C. Bar for more than 20 years.Read Recap
To celebrate the D.C. Bar’s 50th anniversary, Sienna, Elena, and Delali interview current D.C. Bar president Chad Sarchio for this special episode. They discuss a wide range of topics including integrity in the law; the continued need for pro bono; the importance of attorney wellness; and what Shakespeare really meant by “Kill all the lawyers.”LISTEN
DC Refers was created through a remarkable collaboration between the D.C. Bar and Washington Council of Lawyers to increase access to justice for the modest means population in DC. This conversation between founders Andrea Ferster, Nancy Lopez, and current DC Refers panel lawyers explores the ways we came together to create a new organization that enhances public service to this underserved population. Hear their story and learn more about DC Refers.LISTEN
This new and timely class will examine certain of the myriad issues litigants have faced accessing the legal system and obtaining the relief to which they are entitled. Racial, ethnic, gender, and economic bias and prejudice have permeated our legal system throughout the years, including today. Our panel of experienced attorneys and experts will discuss the issues those who have traditionally been denied access to justice face; the progress the system has made during the past 50 years, including the right to counsel in some civil matters; and what we need to ensure all get access to justice.
Senior Program Attorney Andrea Rodricks along with Communities Committee members Charles Lowery and Steven Miller discuss the work of the Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility Initiative. Their conversation includes information about the development of Lawyers’ Toolkit for Diversity & Inclusion and the Organizational Health Indicators for Diversity recommendations, as well as a brief overview of the efforts of the Initiative’s Project Groups. This podcast is brought to you in part by our sponsors, ChatAgents and the American Heart Association’s Lawyers Have Heart 10K, 5K and Fun Walk.LISTEN
Join the D.C. Bar Taxation Community for two days of panel discussions focusing on legislative and regulatory updates on corporate, partnership and individual taxation, tax-exempt tax reform, international tax including the latest OECD developments, tax planning, compensation and benefits reform, health and welfare tax, employment tax, bankruptcy taxation, taxation of financial products, employment tax, tax controversy and more. If enacted, the Build Back Better Act’s tax-related provisions will be a particular focus of this year’s conference.REGISTER
The District of Columbia Bar congratulates the winners of its 2022 Annual Awards, honoring individuals and organizations whose work helped ensure the advancement of the profession and enrichment of the legal community. The awardees’ contributions include the promotion of important social justice issues, the provision of volunteer services that expand access to justice, and the development of projects and initiatives that support these goals.learn more
The D.C. Bar Taxation Community’s 2022 Tax Legislative and Regulatory Update conference, held virtually on May 4 and 5, included many sessions that considered how tax attorneys can help their clients work toward a future that is not only profitable, but also socially responsible. Lily L. Batchelder, assistant secretary for tax policy at the U.S. Department of the Treasury, presented the keynote address on the latest developments in the nation’s efforts to support the intergovernmental Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). Founded to stimulate economic progress and free trade, the OECD is working to ensure the fair taxation of multinational corporations.read more
During the past 50 years, attorneys have seen unprecedented growth in the use of technology in their practice. This includes the overarching issue of the need to safeguard their clients’ privacy, not only here, but abroad. Our knowledgeable panel will provide an overview of the domestic and global challenges to safeguarding client privacy; government efforts to safeguard such information (e.g., the CCPA and GDPR); relevant court decisions and statutory developments; and what attorneys need to know to meet their legal and ethical obligations.REGISTER
On May 20 the D.C. Bar celebrated the graduation of 24 attorneys from its John Payton Leadership Academy, an intensive training program focused on developing and refining the skills necessary for Bar members to become effective leaders.learn more
Charles R. Lowery Jr., director of legislative policy and external affairs at New American Funding, has been elected president-elect of the D.C. Bar for the 2022–2023 term. He will serve in that position for one year starting July 1 before becoming president in 2023. He will continue in office a third year as immediate past president. With Lowery’s installation, incumbent President-Elect Ellen M. Jakovic will become the Bar’s 51st president.read more
D.C. Bar International Law Community fellow Sydney Taylor and Georgetown LAWA fellows Tosin Oke, Eunice Ndingo, and Ngenarr-Yassin Jeng discuss survivor-centered approaches to legal action against sexual violence in Africa. This episode is brought to you in part by our sponsors, ChatAgents and the American Heart Association’s Lawyers Have Heart 10K, 5K & Fun Walk.listen
To commemorate the D.C. Bar’s 50th anniversary, the D.C. Bar Communities Office will be honoring six outstanding Communities members with its inaugural Trailblazer Awards, recognizing their leadership in their respective practice areas, excellence in their professional and personal lives, and dedication to the mission of the D.C. Bar. The honorees will be recognized at the D.C. Bar Celebration of Leadership on June 23 at the Renaissance Washington, DC Downtown Hotel.read more
Join the D.C. Bar for our signature event of the year, bringing together our local, national, and international members with leaders of our profession to focus on important developments in the law. This momentous event includes educational sessions, networking opportunities, and impressive keynote speakers.Save the date
The annual D.C. Bar Celebration of Leadership honors the extraordinary achievements of D.C. Bar members and officially welcomes the newly elected D.C. Bar officers, members of the Board of Governors, and American Bar Association delegates.LEARn more
Since 1993, past presidents of the D.C. Bar have hosted the Presidents Reception to honor the incoming president of the Bar and to support the D.C. Bar Pro Bono Center, the largest provider of pro bono legal help in the District of Columbia. With the support of our generous donors and dedicated attorney volunteers, we operate award-winning legal clinics, projects, and resource centers that serve more than 20,000 individuals, nonprofits, and small businesses each year.LEARN MORE
In this special episode commemorating the 50th anniversary of the D.C. Bar, newly instituted President-Elect Charles Lowery, Jr. is interviewed by Leila Bham, member and former chair of the Corporations, Finance, and Securities Law Community. They discuss a wide range of topics related to leadership in the legal profession, including the importance of DEIA initiatives and Charles’ approach to leading the D.C. Bar into the next 50 years. Thank you to our sponsors Chat Agents and Lawyers Have Heart.Listen
Practice 360º is a daylong conference from the D.C. Bar Practice Management Advisory Service featuring a full day of practical seminars taught by industry experts to help you revolutionize how you manage your firm. Join fellow attorneys from big and small firms and organizations on September 14, 2022 to stay current with the business side of the law, and hear from leaders in law firm management, wellness, technology, and marketing.LEARN MORE
The D.C. Bar is a proud partner in the first National Vaccine Law Conference on September 15-16, 2022, a seminal event bringing together the top legal minds and scholars in vaccine law to reimagine the legal response to infectious diseases and counter the heavy toll such diseases extract from society.register
This popular annual class features a lively panel discussion of the issues and cases that will be before the Supreme Court in the next term (OT22), as well as insights into the 2021-2022 Supreme Court term’s highlights. Our moderator, James Romoser, editor of SCOTUSblog, will lead an engaging panel discussion with experienced Supreme Court practitioners who are uniquely qualified to look at the Court’s trends and statistics and provide insights into its decisions.register
In this special episode commemorating the 50th anniversary of the D.C. Bar, Felicia Battista and Tom Mugavero, chair and vice-chair, respectively, of the D.C. Bar Communities Committee, discuss the advantages and benefits of joining the D.C. Bar Communities. Moderated by D.C. Bar Communities Director Pamela Robinson. This episode is brought to you in part by our sponsor, ChatAgents.listen
The International Conference on Legislation and Law Reform focuses on how laws are written in the United States and around the world at the international, national, and subnational levels. Each year, the conference draws speakers and attendees from around the world. The conference provides an unparalleled opportunity for a wide range of experts to meet and exchange knowledge and perspectives on a topic of great importance to governance: the drafting and reform of laws.learn more
Join us for this D.C. Bar 50th Anniversary Class: The D.C. Rules of Professional Conduct have numerous provisions that are particularly relevant to attorneys handling pro bono matters. From the applicability of rules requiring written fee agreements to dealing with pro se litigants or impaired clients to conflict-of-interest issues, our faculty experts will help those who attend better understand their ethical obligations. Using hypothetical scenarios based on actual issues and questions pro bono attorneys have raised, D.C. Bar ethics counsel and a representative of the D.C. Bar Pro Bono Center will give those who attend the tools needed to avoid ethical problems when representing pro bono clients.register
Since 1972, the rights and protections established by Title IX have been at the center of progress for women and girls in the United States in education and, particularly, in sports. To celebrate the landmark law’s 50th anniversary, the D.C. Bar Arts, Entertainment, Media, and Sports Law Community and the Women’s Bar Association of the District of Columbia, will assemble a panel of experts to explore the history behind the legislation that resulted in Title IX, the legal efforts necessary to ensure enforcement in the early days, and the ongoing work necessary to guarantee the future of gender equity. The discussion will be followed by a networking reception.join us in person
Brief Encounters sits down with Ellen Jakovic, president of the D.C. Bar; Candace Beck, president of the Women’s Bar Association; and Rawle Andrews, president of the Bar Association of the District of Columbia, to discuss their journeys to leadership of their respective organizations. In addition, the trio gives insights on the role of bar organizations, the landscape for membership organizations today, and the particular challenges faced by the organized bar. Pamela Robinson, D.C. Bar Communities Office director, moderates the discussion. This episode is brought to you in part by our sponsor, Chat Agents.listen
50th Anniversary Celebration
See photos from D.C. Bar’s 2022 Conference, Presidents Reception, and Celebration of Leadership.
(Photos by Patrice Gilbert)
The Next 50 Years
What will the D.C. Bar look like in 2072? That’s up to you. Get involved and help shape the future of the D.C. legal community.