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It used to be that all candidates running in D.C. Bar elections had to do was attend a few forums, shake some hands at networking events, and pick up a couple of endorsements. But that was so last decade. Now some candidates are running full-blown campaigns — complete with slick postcards trumpeting their credentials and Web sites listing their supporters — in an effort to land a coveted leadership position when voting ends on June 7. This year, Baker & Hostetler sent out about 38,000 high- gloss, first-class postcards touting two of its partners, commercial litigator Elizabeth Scully, who is running for treasurer, and employment litigator Johnine Barnes, who is up for a seat on the board of governors, as “the winning ticket of proven leadership.” Barnes says she and Scully approached the firm with the idea after seeing other mailings from candidates in the past. “We thought it spoke highly of the firm to have two partners running,” Scully says. Melvin White, a president-elect candidate and partner at McDermott, Will & Emery, says he sent postcards because he wanted something that would grab voters’ attention immediately. Letters go unopened, and e-mails get deleted, White says. He mailed about 22,000 postcards to targeted bar members, and at the bottom of the card, he included his Web site address. White also had another reason for taking the postcard route. Since he is funding his campaign himself, he says, his mailing went out at the cheaper postcard rate.
Bethany Broida can be contacted at [email protected].

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