With 2019 behind us, there is a natural tendency to reflect on the past, to take stock of where things stand, and to contemplate the future. In our professional lives, that may mean acknowledging clients, reliving successes and failures, and making plans for the year to come. In columns such as this, reflecting on the year gone by usually means addressing changes in the composition of the courts, noteworthy decisions or cases awaiting decision.
Focusing on those “big picture” ideas neglects the fact that the operation of the courts in which we appear depends on public servants who work every day to ensure that things go smoothly and cases move forward. It is certainly true that judicial comings and goings affect the development of the law. A new administration, new laws or rules, or the retirement or appointment of a particular judge can shape the law, for better or ill. Yet the experience of practicing in a court depends on a variety of other people that we should notice and recognize.
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